Post medieval folk art is an important yet under studied aspect of Irish cultural history and archaeology. The majority of the surviving examples consist of eighteenth and nineteenth century stone sculpture, a large percentage of which relates to decoration found on funerary monuments. A significant sub-set of non-funerary stone folk art also exists scattered around the country and it is this group that is the focus of this study.
Non-funerary stone carvings depict a wide range of secular imagery such as human faces, animals and themes from Irish folklore. They are found in varying locations ranging from walls of vernacular cottages, farm buildings , bridges, estate houses and follies.
The Irish Folk Art project was set up in 2016 with the aim of recording the surviving examples of Irish folk art and identifying the names and stories of the people who created them. To date the project has identified and surveyed folk art in Counties Tipperary, Limerick, Wicklow and Galway.
In 2016 the project received a grant from Rosin O’Grady, the Heritage Officer of Tipperary County Council. The grant money was used to survey eight pieces of sculpture from South Tipperary using photogrammetry. The results of the photogrammetry and the folk art survey will be made available through this blog, public lectures and publications.
If anyone knows of any carvings they would like to include in the survey please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.