The school’s first week.

Model of The Cardboard School.


The group get a tour on the first day.  We go see ‘Wankruptcy, by Neven Lehart.


We see the giant squid on the third floor…


The Cardboard School as part of Dublin Contemporary 2011

“I have passed with a nod of the head

Or polite meaningless words,

Or have lingered awhile and said

Polite meaningless words.”

“The horse that comes from the road,

The rider, the birds that range

From cloud to tumbling cloud,

Minute by minute they change.”

“All changed, changed utterly.”

“Too long a sacrifice

Can make a stone of the heart.”

These quotes are excerpts from the poem “Easter 1916” by W.B. Yeats, in which he embodies the momentous changes that Ireland was undergoing at that historical time.  The nature of Ireland changed – and the dream of an Irish republic stepped towards actualization.

Dublin Contemporary 2011 recognizes the changes that Ireland is undergoing at this moment in time, shown through the central allusion in Dublin Contemporary to Yeats’s poem.  If you walk into The Cardboard School in the early weeks of the exhibition you will hear the quotes above echo through its walls.  These words will be replaced over time by opinions on Dublin Contemporary exhibition itself.

Look up more about the exhibition at

About the project.

The Cardboard School is a participatory art and education project put together by collaborative artists Kathryn Maguire and Aine Ivers.  They created a cardboard structure influenced by the ancient Greek agora.  Space for assembly and the exercise of democracy is at the heart of this participatory project.   It serves both as an structured area of debate for young visitors and a private space of reflection for the passer-by.  /this installation fuses an environment that encourages participation with a desire to make contemporary art accessible to all.

The ‘school’ that happens in the cardboard agora comprises of 12 young participants, aged between 16 and 18, from three Dublin youth services, and a youth worker from each service.   The youth services who are participating are Finglas Youth Services, Mellowes Road, Finglas West, Dublin 11,  Coolock Youth Services, Sphere17, Coolock, Dublin 17 and Swan Youth Services, St. Agatha’s Hall, Fairview, Dublin 9.

The participants are meeting once a week for six weeks in The Cardboard School.  They are coming together to see the extensive array of artworks in Dublin Contemporary 2011, to reflect together on their opinions of the works and to make cardboard furniture and a zine about Dublin Contemporary.