The Covid-19 Crisis Response Award of €1 million for Irish artists to create online work has been met with dismay by Ireland's National Campaign for the Arts (NCFA), which is accusing the Department of Culture, Heritage & the Gaeltacht of having a "lack of vision shown in relation to the arts" because the fund "does not apply to many kinds of artistic practice".
The money is earmarked for Irish-based professional artists to provide access for the public to new and original art during the period of coronavirus isolation. But the campaigning body says the Arts Council fund "represents a small investment in individual artists" and other initiatives "do not address the real damage that has been done to the sector through the ongoing crisis".
NCFA said: "Yet again, Ireland’s place at the bottom of the pile in terms of investment in culture and arts in Europe is demonstrated", and are calling on Government to add significantly more funding to the Arts Council scheme and open up the restrictive conditions attached to the scheme.
Culture Ireland and Facebook Ireland have also announced a new scheme - Ireland Performs - to support the live presentation of professional artists' work on online platforms.