It is through this that the author recreates the early attempts at bringing culture to the people not only of Belfast but also within the Irish art world. Primary sources are used, charting the growth of the city into a lively centre for the trading of art.
When the first commercial art gallery was opened in 1864 an exhibiting society, the Art Union of Belfast, was formed. This prestigious space and body developed, and later public-spirited individuals re-established amenities for art education within the community and provided intellectual recreation for the working-class population.
Their efforts led to the opening of a new School of Art in 1870 and the Free Public Library in 1888. This neglected area of Belfast's cultural life is given an authoritative re-appraisal and places events in context for the first time. It contains much new material and a wide range of illustration making it an essential book for Irish art historians everywhere.
It is essential reading to all those interested not only in Irish art but also the book provides a fascinating social history of the many aspects of Belfast life in those times.
|Publisher||Irish Academic Press|
|Publication date||20 Jan 2006|