Butler Gallery invites people living with dementia and their family, friends or professional carers to visit our exhibitions, to look and discuss with others in a safe and welcoming environment.
What to Expect?
Trained facilitators create a warm atmosphere that encourages conversation, where each person gets to enjoy the engagement at their own pace and in their own way. Participants can expect a seated tour of the gallery with time given to experiencing a selection of work from the exhibition. The tour ends with a cup of tea or coffee in the Castle Tea Rooms, just next to the Butler Gallery.
Please note, Butler Gallery is located down a flight of steps in the basement of Kilkenny Castle. Unfortunately there is no step-free access and is therefore unsuitable for people who use a wheelchair or have mobility difficulties.
If you are thinking of coming along, feel free to call 056 7761106 to talk through any ideas, thoughts or concerns before your visit.
The Azure Project: Some Background
Exploring greater inclusion of people with dementia in museums and galleries in Ireland
The Azure project, based on a collaboration between Age & Opportunity, The Alzheimer Society of Ireland, the Butler Gallery Kilkenny, and the Irish Museum of Modern Art (IMMA), is exploring how greater inclusion for people with dementia could be made possible in an Irish cultural context.
The project is inspired by the ‘Meet me at MoMA’ programme making art accessible to people with dementia, which is based at New York’s Museum of Modern Art. Azure sought to practically explore the application of the ‘Meet Me’ model in Ireland through piloting guided visits of art works in the Butler Gallery collection for people with dementia and their family, friends and carers. Based on this practical research, an evaluation report was produced. A report of our findings from this pilot project is available here.
Building on the interest in this work Butler Gallery worked with the project partners to host training in May 2015 for staff working in museums and galleries across Ireland. Input was provided by various representatives from the partnership, the Meet Me at MoMa programme in New York and a person living with dementia. The aim of the training was to build the capacity of staff from museums and galleries to be more dementia friendly and to provide them with the skills and knowledge needed to facilitate dementia-inclusive arts events.