In this Section -
Ireland's oldest arts charity
Visit to Kevin Barry Memorial Window in the Charles Institute of University College Dublin, Wednesday 21st February 2024
For details and booking form, click HERE.
Celebrating 100 Years of the FNCI
This year is the 100th anniversary of the foundation of the Friends of the National Collections of Ireland in 1924, and the centenary is being celebrated in galleries of art and museums throughout Ireland. In gratitude for the hundreds of works of art and objects of historical importance and purchase grants which the Friends have donated to public collections during the century, they are showing special exhibitions of some of those gifts. For details of these events, click HERE.
The exhibitions are free and are well worth visiting.
Do try to see as many of them as you can.
2 New Exhibitions at the Waterford Gallery of Art, 14th February to 13th July, 2024.
100 Years of the FNCI and Prints and Drawings.
100 Years of Giving - an exhibition to mark the centenary of the founding of FNCI
16th February 7th April 2024,
For your invitation to the preview on Thursday, February 15th from 5pm to 7pm, click HERE.
To read the Limerick City Gallery press release on the exhibition, click HERE.
Festive Lunch 2023
Some of the guests at the Festive Lunch in the Royal Irish Yacht Club , Dun Laoghaire on Saturday the 18th of November 2023.
Lunchtime Music for Friends in St Ann's Church, Dawson St, Dublin 2
EVENT: Top Irish and international performers.
TIME: Thursdays at 1.20 pm 9th February to 15th December 2023
PRICE: €10 - €8 with FNCI Friends Membership Card.
For full details, click HERE.
Friends visit to Marsh’s Library on 28th February 2023
Visit to Leinster House
Members of the FNCI who were unable to join our visit to Leinster House may wish to hear about what they missed.
We had the good fortune to be introduced to the many portraits in the building by the distinguished painter, Mick O'Dea PPRHA. The portraits represent the history of the State through its leaders and politicians, and include the work of every well known Irish artist of the last hundred years. (He himself is represented by his fine portrait of the FNCI's Patron, President Michael D. Higgins, which will hang there until he leaves office, when it will go to Aras an Uachtarain.)
Members were fascinated by Mick O'Dea's insights into the portraits, and his description of how a portrait painter approaches his craft. People don't often get the opportunity to view paintings through the painter's eye. It was also interesting to study the representations of well known politicians, past and present, to see whether we thought the painter had captured the sitter's personality.
Members also had the benefit of the expertise of two other persons. Jaquie Moore (who had welcomed us) of the OPW, who have recently completed a major and painstaking refurbishment of Leinster House, told us the very interesting history of the building, drew our attention to its beautiful architectural features, and described the works recently done. The restored Seanad chamber, in particular, is a real gem. Ireland now has a seat of parliament which any country might envy. Senior usher Thomas Hickey of the parliamentary staff, who possesses an enormous wealth of knowledge of all aspects of Leinster House, gave us vivid glimpses of life on the inside.
After our tour we adjourned to the comfortable bar for a glass of wine, tea and coffee, well satisfied with a very enjoyable excursion. Our thanks are due to our three guides for giving us a most interesting tour, and to Anne Kearney Farrelly of our Council who arranged everything.
Annual Friends' Subscription, 2023
For details and payment form, click HERE.
Our New President
At our Annual General Meeting Dr John Turpin was elected as President of the Friends of the National Collections of Ireland.
Dr Turpin attended the Courtauld Institute of Art, London, was appointed professor of the history of art at the National College of Art and Design, Dublin, in 1975 and was director of the college from 1989 to 1994. He has published extensively on the history of Irish art and recently wrote the two volume History of the Royal Hibernian Academy. He has served a previous term as president of the FNCI.
His predecessor, the distinguished painter Dr Tom Ryan, who sadly has died, was a former president of the Royal Hibernian Academy and was the first professional artist to have been president of the FNCI since Dermod O'Brien in the 1940s.
Ms June Lattimore was re-elected as Honorary Secretary and Dr Michael Burns was re-elected as Honorary Treasurer.
For a full list of the members of Council, click on ABOUT.
A Generous Bequest
The Friends of the National Collections of Ireland have received a generous bequest under the will of our former president, the late Dr John Maiben Gilmartin. It is very much appreciated, and will greatly assist us in our work, which has too often been frustrated through lack of funds.
John joined the Friends while still a student, was an active and erudite member of Council
for many years and was our president on two occasions, most recently from 2016 to 2018. It was entirely in character that his will should reflect his public spirit and philanthropy, with thoughtfully chosen gifts of paintings, sculpture and interesting objects left by him to a range of national and regional cultural institutions in Dublin, Sligo, Waterford and
elsewhere. His contribution to the work of the Friends deserves to be commemorated,
and Council is considering how best to do this.
The Work Goes On
Although the lengthy Covid-19 pandemic restrictions curtailed the FNCI's normal programme of visits and social events for its members, we did not allow it to stop us from continuing to acquire works to donate to national and regional cultural institutions.
For details of what we have been doing, please click on DONATIONS.
We hope that circumstances will allow us to resume our social activities in the autumn.
In the meantime we are extremely grateful to loyal members who have continued to
pay the annual subscription.
Give a friend a Gift of FNCI Membership
Brighten somebody’s life throughout the year with a subscription to the Friends of the National Collections of Ireland (FNCI).
Individual: = €40
Student: = €20
Family: = €60
Life Membership: = €500
Corporate Membership: = €600
Your much-appreciated gift will provide an opportunity to meet our members and to join in some truly memorable events during the year ahead.
Just send a cheque or debit card details to:
The Honorary Treasurer,
P.O. Box 11481,
giving us the name and address of the person you want to receive this gift and leave the rest to us.