Category Archives:


Green Sleeves, An exhibition of the Irish printed album cover

This exhibition features album covers by Irish musicians printed and designed in Ireland from the 1950s onwards. It includes examples from a broad range of musical genres – classical, traditional, show band, pop, jazz, rock and punk, as well as cultural, educational and religious records. It also examines aspects of Irish cultural, social and political identity promoted or projected through these albums. A section of the exhibition considers depiction of Ireland on albums produced abroad as well as a sampling of albums produced by Irish artists and musicians who left Ireland and went to the UK or US.

The primary focus traces the development of an industry, which saw print companies devoted to printing album covers. This industry flourished for two decades before declining in parallel with the vinyl record. The exhibition considers who was involved in the process of producing and distributing these materials. In addition, the recollections of individual printers, designers, musicians and others involved in the area offer further insight.

The material on display is primarily album covers, but also includes singles, Eps, gig tickets, music magazines, posters and other ephemera. Central to the exhibition is an explanation of the design, print, production and finishing processes – including an example of original print block along with the finished record sleeve and a number of other similar artefacts.

Green Sleeves is curated by Dr Ciaran Swan and Niall McCormack.

Free admission.

Exhibition runs from 5 May until 1 October 2017.

The Typographic Dante

Barrie Tullett, University of Lincoln

The Divine Comedy is a poem by Dante Alighieri. Written between 1308 and 1320, it describes Dante’s journey through Hell, Purgatory and Paradise, and, at a deeper level, represents the souls journey towards God. The Typographic Dante is a series of typographic illustrations created as a response to this unfolding narrative. Each Canto being illustrated typographically, and each book of the Divine Comedy having a different typographic style.

This is an on-going project by Barrie Tullett, Programme Leader for Graphic Design at the University of Lincoln, that will eventually illustrate each of the 100 Cantos of Dante’s Divine Comedy using a different ‘obsolete’ technology.The 34 Cantos of The Inferno are realised using the wood and metal type of letterpress printing, the 33 Cantos of Purgatory are created on the typewriter, and the 33 Cantos of Paradise will be visualised with Letraset.

The seed of the project was planted many years ago, but it did not begin to come together as a coherent body of work until Tullett’s final year as a Visual Communication student at the Chelsea School of Art. Ever since, he has returned to the project whenever he have had the time, and has slowly added to the illustrations. This is the first time that all the completed images will be exhibited as a single body of work.

The exhibition runs from 10 February until 2 April 2017.

Admission is free of charge.

2017 Exhibition Programme

The 2017 Exhibition Programme will be announced at the end of January 2017!

Graphic Explorations in Print

32 years of student work from Distillers Press, NCAD

Distillers Press, previously known as the graphic print workshop, had its origin at the National College of Art and Design’s original location on Kildare Street. In the 1980s when the Department of Visual Communication moved to the college’s new location on Thomas Street, the facility was expanded by the then Head of Department, Bill Bolger. Seán Sills was appointed custodian of the Press in 1983.

The Press now has a number of operational letterpress proofing presses and a large collection of metal and wooden type approximately 280 cases of metal type and 110 cases of wooden type in a wide variety of fonts.

It is used by students on a daily basis for creative projects and also as a teaching tool to introduce the fundamentals of typography. Ireland’s first practice-based Masters in the visual arts was undertaken at the Press in 1986; samples of this work can be viewed in the exhibition.

The Press is unique in being the only operational letterpress print facility used on a daily basis in third level design education in Ireland. Over the years Distillers Press has collaborated with some of Ireland’s greatest artists, writers and poets including the late Nobel Laurette Seamus Heaney.

The facility began to be known as the Distillers Press in the late 1990s due to the college campus location in the old Power’s Whiskey Distillery, where whiskey was manufactured for nearly 200 years. In 2005, Distillers Press relocated to the School of Design and reverted back to a purely letterpress facility due to the resurgence of the interest in letterpress printing and the advancements in digital printing.

Distillers Press collaborated with the National Gallery of Ireland on its first contemporary exhibition of Print Art into Art, and the Chester Beatty Library for their exhibition The Holy Show. Work from the Press is collected by private collectors and national institutions such as the Rare Books Section of Trinity College Library, National Library of Ireland and the National Visual Arts Library, as well as many overseas libraries and universities in the UK, USA and Australia.

Graphic Explorations is a showcase of work produced by graphic design students at Distillers Press from 1983 until present day. Curated by Seán Sills, custodian of the Press during that period, the exhibition encompasses posters, books and a collection of ephemera. The National Print Museum has had strong links with Distillers Press over many years, working on collaborative projects and is delighted to host this exhibition. Graphic Explorations has been made possible with the generous support of Irish Design 2015.

Exhibition runs from 10 December 2015 until end of February 2016.

Free admission.

See the What’s on page for further programming details.

A World to Win, Posters of Protest and Revolution

To celebrate the year of design, Irish Design 2015 and the National Print Museum host the Irish debut of the Victoria and Albert Museum, London touring exhibition, A World to Win, Posters of Protest and Revolution.  

A World to Win is an exhibition of posters of protest and revolution exploring a century of posters agitating for political change. From the “Votes of Women” campaigns of the early twentieth century to the recent occupy movements, political activists around the world have used posters to mobilise, educate and organise. The exhibition will comprise of approximately seventy posters drawn from the V&A collection and will feature a diverse array of artists, graphic designers and print collectives. The exhibition is curated by Catherine Flood, V&A Prints Curator.

A World to Win is sponsored by ID2015; Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht; Dublin City Council; and Aviva Stadium Community Fund.

Exhibition organised by the Victoria and Albert Museum, London.

17 September – 8 November 2015

Free admission

See the What’s on page for further programming details.



Imperfect: Letterpress x 3

Imperfect: Letterpress x 3 is a trio exhibition featuring work from Joey Hannaford, University of West Georgia, Mervi Pakaste, Kansas State University and Jeff Pulaski, Wichita State University. In their letterpress work, they seek to extend their design processes beyond the computer screen. Instead of strictly imposing order, they try to utilize the letterpress medium in ways that encourage interpretation, spontaneity and improvisation. The seductive embossing of the page and textural qualities of the prints add unique qualities to the end results. The physical letterforms become an equal partner in the process as their age and history are revealed. Through this traditional form of printing they tell new stories, in a modern context. Despite working with a common process, each one has a dedication to express an individual voice.

April – May 2013

Free admission

Shopping Cart

Contact Us

National Print Museum,
Garrison Chapel,
Beggars Bush Barracks,
Haddington Road,
Dublin 4,

T: +353 1 660 3770