Wednesday 19 March 2014

Minister launches Inspiring Ireland in USA
Jimmy Deenihan TD, Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht has launched Inspiring Ireland at Stanford University, California.

Inspiring Ireland is an ambitious online project designed to bring Ireland's renowned national collections to a global audience.

Some of the country's most treasured cultural assets from national museums, libraries, galleries, archives and theatre have been digitised and photographed to a very high standard and can now be viewed free of charge at a new interactive website called, you guessed it,

The project is a collaboration between the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, the Digital Repository of Ireland, the National Library, the National Museum, the National Gallery, the National Archives, the Irish Museum of Modern Art, the Crawford Art Gallery, the Chester Beatty Library and the Abbey Theatre.

The launch site features a core exhibition – A Sense of Place – accompanied by two further exhibitions: A Sense of Freedom, and A Sense of Identity. These three exhibitions are populated with more than 100 fully searchable objects, including digitised paintings, letters, sculpture, historical objects, photography, letters and documents, and ephemera.

Speaking at the launch, Minister Deenihan commented: "It gives me great pride to launch Inspiring Ireland. Ireland’s national cultural institutions hold collections that are of great international significance. They chart the story of Ireland, from pre-Christian and medieval times to the modern day. And they hold as part of their collections treasures of international importance drawn from the across the globe.

"Inspiring Ireland will also support the digitisation and preservation of Ireland's digital cultural heritage for future generations, showcasing once again Ireland's growing reputation as a centre for the innovative use of digital technology."