Visual - Art Centre
Carlow, Ireland

The new gallery for contemporary art, together with its 350-seat “George Bernard Shaw Theatre”, is located in the centre of Carlow within the grounds of St Patrick's College and opposite the Cathedral.

The architectural language of the building has been developed as an intersecting assembly of translucent glass volumes that transforms throughout the day as light passes through the building skin.

Internally, the main 'white box' gallery spaces are linked by a landscape of exposed in-situ concrete. Wall surfaces have been cast against a textured board and the deeply coffered concrete ceilings, creating a tension between the stark simplicity of the gallery spaces and the linking landscape with its robust industrial quality.



First prize / RIAI Competition

VISUAL, Carlow County Council

Gross Floor area:
4,600 sqm

Structural Engineer:
Arup, Ireland

Environmental Engineer:
Arup, Ireland

Gallery Consultant:
Bruce McAllister

Quantity Surveyor:
Nolan Ryan Tweeds

Theatre Consultant:

Theatre Project Consultants


Acoustic Dimensions

Helene Binet
James Brittain
Terry Pawson Architects
























The building creates an abstract inner space where reference to the everyday world is intentionally controlled in order to enhance a sense of 'otherness' for both the theatre and the gallery environment