Sherkin Island

Sherkin Island...the ancestral home of the O’Driscoll clan, is the most accessible island in Ireland – only ten minutes by ferry from the small fishing port of Baltimore, Co.Cork. The island boasts a wonderful array of landscapes, Atlantic views from the hilltops, fuchsia-scented lanes and the finest sandy beaches. The Abbey, located near the pier was built in 1460 by Fineen O’Driscoll and is a fine example of medieval monastic architecture.


Wild flowers abound on Sherkin. It is second only to the Burren in its botanical richness. Many birds breed on the island and rare migrants pass through in spring and autumn while butterflies and dragonflies adorn the lanes...read more..




The BA (Hons) in Visual Art had its genesis in a series of pilot programmes jointly developed by the School of Art, Design & Printing at the Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT) and the Sherkin Island Development Society (SIDS) and delivered in the Community Hall on Sherkin Island between 2000 and 2003. This four year modular honours degree programme offers a dynamic and creative education in the visual arts and is fully accredited, managed and delivered by the Dublin Institute of Technology. Sherkin Island Development Society (SIDS) and West Cork Arts Centre have been active partners in the planning and implementation of the programme...read more...






The BA in Visual Art is a unique opportunity to study visual art on Sherkin Island , County Cork. This 4 year honours degree programme offers a dynamic and creative education in a remarakable location by using a combination of studio practice workshops on Sherkin Island with a range of online distance education technologies. The primary aim of the programme is to provide students with an advanced knowledge of the nature, role and potential of contemporary art. This emphasis is sympathetic to context, in particular the possiblities offered by art for remote rural communities...Read More...









Graduates establish themselves as professional artists and can also find employment in the cultural and community sectors as gallery and studio assistants, arts officers in County Council Offices,  curators and as arts administrators. There are also opportunities for employment in the teaching profession and to pursue graduate studies up to PhD level...








The Visual Art staff take pride in being a well-integrated team who enjoy working together and have established a friendly atmosphere within which to cultivate the best learning experiences for our students. We thrive on a diversity of opinion, taste and approach. Our team comprises practising artists, critics and curators who cover the whole spectrum of contemporary art practice and art-related knowledge.   We are all actively involved in the contemporary cultural scene as organisers, makers and commentators.

Core Team:

Programme Co-ordinator:    Dr. Glenn Loughran...


Local Facilitators:        Majella O'Neill Collins

                           Adrian Legg

                           Fergus Murphy

DIT Fine Art Staff...










This year’s BA in Visual Arts Sherkin Island (DIT) degree show, ‘Uncover’, opened over the weekend of 20th – 22nd May. At the invitation of Programme Co-ordinator Glenn Loughran, Dr. Tina Kinsella  and Dr.Lucy Dawe Lane made a trip down to see the show.  The following is an account of their first Sherkin experience...Read More... 





             Digital Media


The remote nature of the course places an emphasis on the use of new technologies and platforms to expand student engagement with the content of the course. Many of the lectures and workshops are performed through the internet and utilise digital technologies to support blended pedagogical techniques. The students have worked with online video editing tools such as Mozilla Firefox's POPCORN platform to create video essays for a first year Critical Theory module, and are currently using the SWIVL classroom robot to gain a more fluid representation of the lectures available in Grangegorman. Future projects will see the introduction of a module on Second Life within the context of a module on Art & Environment and the expanded use of e-portfolios throughout the course.  

The course team is committed to testing and evaluating these tools within the framework of educational research...read more...











Uillinn: West Cork Arts Centre has been a partner with the B.A.V.A since its inception, and continues to play a pivotal role in its student community. 

Designed as a purpose-built building for the arts in West Cork, Uillinn comprises two contemporary galleries, three artists' studios, a work space, a multi-purpose dance, performance, film, lecture space,café, courtyard, office space. Established in 1985 in Skibbereen, Co. Cork. It is a publicly funded arts facility that creates opportunities for the people of West Cork to have access to, and engagement with, local and global arts practice of excellence. It supports a multi-disciplinary arts programme with a focus on contemporary visual art . 

The Education and Community Programme provides services on site at West Cork Arts Centre for artists, children, young people, adults, families, older people and people with disabilities. The Centre also provides outreach services in schools, hospitals, day care centres, youth projects and with active retirement groups and community groups throughout the West Cork region.  

A full exhibition programme running throughout the year comprises work by local, national and internationally artists...READ MORE...

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          1/  LECTURE SERIES:     LUCY LIPPARD  

              TITLE:              "GROUND LEVEL"

              LOCATION:           SHERKIN ISLAND

              DATE:               2002










Sherkin Island Development Society (SIDS)is one of the main partners for the BAVA and employs 3 staff members to help deliver the programme on Sherkin. SIDS members support the programme by overseeing the financial running of the programme and voluntarily giving their time and space for final year exhibitions. SIDS is responsible to the Department of Arts Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs, Cork County Council and its members.Founded in 1983 as Sherkin Island Community Development Association, was registered in 1994 as a co-operative. Its main objective is, to promote and aid educational, economic, social and cultural development for the community. From September 2012 the course has been jointly funded by Cork County Council and the Department of  Arts Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs formerly Arts Heritage and the Gaeltacht.


The Department Of Arts Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs

The Department of Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs oversees the protection and presentation of Ireland’s heritage and cultural assets and promotes long-term sustainable economic and social progress across rural Ireland. Their goals are to promote and protect Ireland’s heritage and culture, to advance the use of the Irish language, to advance economic and social progress in rural Ireland, to support the sustainable development of the islands and to develop cultural tourism. A central objective of this Department is to ensure that sustainable vibrant communities continue to live on the islands.


Cork County Council

Cork County Council is the authority responsible for local government in County Cork.  As a county council, it is governed by the Local Government Act 2001. The council is responsible for housing and community, roads and transportation, urban planning and development, amenity and culture, and environment. The head of the council has the title of Mayor. The county administration is headed by a Chief Executive, Martin Riordan. Cork County Council support the islands through the West Cork Island Interagency. The BAVA programme ties in with the Islands Intergrated Development Strategy.



Digital Art and education in the Anthropocne

Saturday, November 12, 2016

By Carole Dolan Weed


To coincide with National Digital week in Skibbereen, and Uillinn West Cork Art Center’s fantastic exhibition “What if we Got it Wrong,”  Uillinn curator Ann Davoren and BAVA director Dr Glenn Loughran organized and chaired a critically reflective panel discussion on the subject of the Anthropocene. The event was moderated by BAVA graduate Dr. Sheelagh Broderick, and featured Dr. Noel Fitzpatrick, Dr. Conor Mc Garrigle and Dean of College John O’Connor. The event took place from 12 until 4, upstairs at Uillinn and I can earnestly say, it was not enough time. The entire event was recorded using SWIVL’s lecture capture robot and is available to see and hear on the B.A.V.A website: bavasherkin.com

 Dr Fitzpatrick led the panelists off by reminding us of the importance of reflection and critical debate, particularly now that populist politics are gaining strength. He provided a clear description of what the Anthropocene is, a word currently in use, but not often explained...Read More



October 14th - 15th 

By Sarah Buckley

As third year students of the BAVA programme on Sherkin Island our module for this semester is Issue Based Art. One of the largest platforms for this area in the arts is The Creative Time Summit. This years Creative Time Summit, entitled “Occupy the Future” and broadcast from Washington DC, coincided with our weekend on the island so it was a great opportunity for us to watch some of the presentations, have some great food and engage in some interesting discussion.

The event was supported by the construction of the STEW STATION by staff and students, which linked the community lunch to the Summit and drew a more diverse crowd of individuals. For those who are unaware of the summit, like I was prior to this weekend, The Creative Time Summit is the leading conference devoted to exploring the intersection between art and social justice...Read More... 




            For more details on BA in Visual Arts on Sherkin Island please


                        Dr.Glenn Loughran at glenn.loughran@dit.ie.