VISUAL is one of Ireland’s leading contemporary art spaces situated in the heart of Carlow Town, with four world class gallery spaces and a 335-seat performance space. Visual is an international hub for realising the value of contemporary arts practice. Working to enrich, inspire and improve the everyday through art.

An international hub for realising the value of contemporary arts practice. Programming is informed by such tenants as being rooted locally but retaining a national and international focus.

We passionately believe that the arts have a vital role to play in cultural, social and economic development, and that access to meaningful engagement with the arts fosters the development of self-esteem, well-being, self-expression, social inclusion, creativity and enterprise, both in individuals and in societies. We are committed to providing meaningful access to and advocacy for, contemporary artistic practice of the highest quality through our programming, events and activities. In addition, we are committed to developing the sustainability of artistic practice both locally and nationally though the ways in which we work and programme. We are committed to identifying and removing physical, social and economic barriers to accessing our work and to support, foster and provide opportunities for arts participation in our communities.

VISUAL places engagement at the heart of programming and builds relevance and active participation through thematic and cross-disciplinary approaches, with a focus on STEM topics as a key strength of the region. Annual exhibition plans are put in place up to two years in advance.

The innovative THRIVE project began in 2019 at Visual Carlow. Initiated by Visual’s AHEH Project Coordinator David Francis Moore and produced by VISUAL as part of the Arts and Humanities Enterprise Hub (AHEH) Project.Thrive aims to include several modes of inquiry to uncover emerging entrepreneurial practice within the Arts in Ireland.Part artist residency, symposium, world cafe, online resource and publication, THRIVE has been developed within the wider frame work of the AHEH Project.