PHOTO GALLERY: Kildare-based artists host exhibition in Dublin – Page 1 of 6


Pictures of Tony Gavin

Life goes on …
A multimedia exhibition marking the centenary of the British Army’s withdrawal from Co. Kildare in 1922, by SULT Artists and Newbridge Local History Group.
Phoenix Park Visitor Centre, Phoenix Park, Dublin 8.
From Saturday 29 October to Tuesday 29 November.

Open daily from 9:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Senator Fiona O’Loughlin and artist Anne McKenna

OFFICIAL OPENING: Catherine Martin, Minister of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht,
Sports and Media will open the exhibition on Wednesday, November 9 at 10:00 a.m.

“This exhibition ‘Life goes on’ was created in remembrance of an event of great local historical significance
importance in County Kildare – the handing over of the British Army’s Kildare Barracks to the new
Free State Army. I would like to congratulate the artists of the SULT, who have worked in collaboration with Newbridge
The Local History Group and Kildare County Council’s Centenarian Decade Program to create a montage
and a moving artistic response to these events, complete with historical context. The opening of ‘Life
Goes On’ in this second location of the Phoenix Park Visitor Center, offers a wonderful opportunity to
new audiences to engage with the exhibition and reflect on an era, both local and national, of
great social and political change. Catherine Martin, Minister for Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht,
Sport and media
The context:
In early 1922, the British Army withdrew its forces from the Free State. May 16
they withdrew simultaneously from barracks at Naas, Newbridge, Kildare and the Curragh
where at one time more than 20,000 troops were stationed. The departure of the army of Co.
Kildare was greeted with joy and sadness. Joy because their departure has ended
800 years of British occupation; sadness because the local economy had a lot
benefited from meeting the needs of so many people.
The withdrawal was a momentous occasion watched by locals as the steady stream of
trucks and troops passed through the towns of Kildare en route to Dublin Port. Almost at
At the same time the fledgling Free State army marched into the Curragh and Newbridge to
take possession of the departing troops. A month later the Irish Civil War began, a war
which left Irish society divided and embittered for generations.
And life goes on…

During the Civil War many Irish were interned in the Curragh, including the father of
President Michael D Higgins: “John Higgins was detained at Tintown 3, Curragh Internment
Camp, for most of 1923. He was arrested in January 1923 and interned at the Curragh before
released Dec. 21, 1923. (President’s Press Office)
To mark and commemorate the political and social change of 1922, SULT artists approached
Newbridge Local History Group and invited them to work together to mark this important
opportunity. The purpose of the collaboration is to produce a visual response to short stories or
snippets of life, or to focus on a historical, political or social event of the time.
The collection of original paintings, fine art prints, ceramics, sculptures and mixed media
the installation is accompanied by a limited edition illustrated book mixing works of art and
historical context and includes a foreword by renowned historian Diarmaid Ferriter.
Supported by the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media as part of the Decade
Centenarians Program 2012-2023.

SULT Artists and Newbridge Local History Group would like to thank the support of the
Kildare Decade of Commemorations Committee, Kildare Co. Council, Department of Tourism,
Culture, arts, Gaeltacht, sport and media as part of the 2012-23 Centenarian Decade initiative,
Newbridge Silverware, Fitzsimons Finance and Newbridge Credit Union.
SULT is an exciting group of multidisciplinary artists based in Kildare who originally came together
during the pandemic. After several exhibitions in Naas, Kildare and Newbridge, they were
approached by businessman Frank McMahon, who invited SULT to collaborate with him in creating
an art gallery in Kildare. Gallery No. 8, located at 8, Academy St., Kildare Town, (R51NW42) was
officially launched during the Nuit de la Culture 2022.
The word SULT is Irish for pleasure, enjoyment, satisfaction, amusement.
SULT members are Eleanor Swan, Brian O’Loughlin, Ann McKenna, Mary McGrath, Lia Laimbock,
Liza Kavanagh, Sylvia Hemmingway, Pamela de Brí and Margaret Becker.
Newbridge Local History Group was founded in the 1980s to stimulate interest in the history of the
town and its surroundings. The group is interested in the preservation of photographic, written and
oral heritage of Newbridge and make these resources easily accessible to all.
From September to June, monthly meetings are held at the Ryston Social Club to highlight and discuss
local history topics relevant to Newbridge and County Kildare

More information:
Email: [email protected]
More information:
Email: [email protected]


About Author

Comments are closed.