Multiplying like Gremlins
So, this is news of sorts. As some of you may have already heard via the grapevine and/or information super-spamway, Monster Truck are relocating the gallery space to a swish new spot in the heart of Temple Bar where the Original Print Gallery used to be. The printing gang are continuing to operate Black Church Print Studios in the same building but are ceasing gallery operations in the shop-front space and will be looking at organising and curating exhibitions in other locations from time to time.
For the past few years Monster Truck has been a bit of a hub for the kind of artists that are referred to as “emerging” by an art world obsessed with curious buzz words. After successfully making a former record store on Francis St a must-visit location on Dublin’s cultural trail, they continued to up their game in terms of the gallery set-up while buddying-up with the RHA gave both sides a boost in stature with the other’s audience. Things have been quiet recently though and the only way to get your art fix on Francis St in the last few months has been to suffer the non-irony of The Bad Art Gallery or gate-crash a Tubs-endorsed opening in Gallery Zozimus.
Now, at a time when galleries are generally struggling and things are looking grim, the Truck team are aiming to brighten up busker-town by introducing some decent exhibitions to Dublin’s “cultural quarter”. The addition of a new gallery to the Temple Bar area goes some way to justifying the original title of cultural significance bestowed on an area that now prioritizes hideous advertising video screens and stag-weekend tailored bars. Aside from Project and TBG&S, there isn’t many major galleries in the area which inquisitive tourists find bizarre when they visit me in the latter. One can only hope that things can be improved if the recession finally kills off a few of the hell-hole licensed establishments in the area while the wider public pay attention to goings-on in the new Monster Truck space. Similarly, it would be especially commendable if the art “scene” got over their collective distrust of alcohol-free openings and started paying attention to the work happening in Exchange Dublin’s gallery space.