Mission & History

Since 2002, TULCA Festival of Visual Arts has captivated Galway city and county with an eclectic display of Contemporary Art. TULCA is a multi-venue, artist-centered festival of contemporary art that works with Irish curators to present innovative exhibitions that provoke and energise audiences into the world of the Visual Arts.

TULCA Festival champions Galway city and county as central to the contemporary visual arts community and as a hub for artists, audiences and culture. We promote the development and exhibition of the contemporary visual arts culture through a national and international network of artists, audiences, curators and art critics.

We aim:
To provide artists with the opportunity to connect and create.
To promote the visual arts through educational workshops and performance activities.
To encourage audiences of all ages to embrace the contemporary arts culture of Galway, Ireland and beyond.

What we do:


Every year TULCA takes place over three weeks in November and is the only festival in Ireland to specifically commission Irish curators who develop a theme unique to the event.
TULCA initiates an open call that invites national and international artists to submit a proposal based upon the chosen theme.

We challenge ourselves and our visitors to think about art and its place in the world, covering a range of subjects. National and International collaboration and exchange have made TULCA a Festival for creative cross-fertilisation and a source of surprise, inspiration and imagination for visitors and participants.

Exhibitions take place in both gallery and non-gallery spaces, featuring projects and events across urban and regional contexts.

We create a visual arts trail through the streets of Galway, embracing the illustrious culture and ambience for which the city is renowned. We host guided tours, talks, seminars and workshops.

An art-through-education programme T.Ed invites schools throughout the city and county to participate in the arts and experience the festival.

Previous Curators:

  • 2004 - Michael Dempsey

  • 2005 - Cliodhna Shaffrey

  • 2005 - Sarah Searson

  • 2006 - Aine Phillips

  • 2007 - Aideen Barry & Louise Manifold

  • 2008 - George Bolster

  • 2009 - Helen Carey

  • 2010 - Michelle Browne

  • 2011 - Megs Morley

  • 2012 - Gregory McCartney

  • 2013 - Valerie Connor

  • 2014 - Aisling Prior

  • 2015 - Mary Cremin

  • 2016 - Daniel Jewesbury

  • 2017 - Matt Packer

  • 2018 - Linda Shevlin