The Project

Bring Your Own Chair is an art project taking place in rural towns and villages across the counties in Kilkenny, Wexford and Waterford throughout 2018 and 2019. As the heart of small towns in Ireland face decline, Bring Your Own Chair looks to share collective experiences using public space for community gatherings and actions.

Participating Towns and Villages

Kilmacthomas, An Rinn, Tallow and Passage East
Ballyhack, Taghmon, Bunclody and Courtown
Coon, Goresbridge, Slieverue and Kells


Town Motif Workshop

Artist and designer Paul Bokslag visited fourteen schools in the twelve towns to deliver papercut and motif workshops, focusing on the built and natural heritage of each town. 923 children took part in the workshops culminating in the design of prints distinct to each town which were distributed through the Town Visit workshops and directly through the schools.

Town Visit

Michelle Browne and the BYOC team led a series of Town Visits in each of the twelve towns over the summer months. The Town Visits centred on participatory workshops through group mapping exercises, individual questionnaires and spatial games. These different approaches were designed to appeal across generations and explore people’s relationship to place.

Design Residencies

Through an Open Call open call process, three Irish and European designers undertook residencies within the specific context of rural towns, engaging with the vernacular craft and design history of the locales. The designers were hosted by three local artists and designers. Workhouse Union developed the residency programme in conjunction with the Design and Craft Council of Ireland

Town Portraits

The Bring Your Own Chair will culminate in 12 acts in each of the 12 towns to create a portrait of the rural South East. A bespoke event will occur in each town- visit our News Page to see when is your Town Portrait and find out how to get involved.