Where should I study art and design?

There are many places for art and design if you have a specific direction in mind: furniture design in GMIT’s Letterfrack campus, interior design in Griffith College, or sculpture in LIT.

The National College of Art and Design (ncad.ie)on Dublin’s Thomas Street is a mecca of arts and design study, with 1,500 undergraduate and post-graduate full and part-time students in fine art, design and visual culture. Most new undergraduates start in First Year Art and Design (common entry) while choosing an area for degree specialisation.

In fine art, degree options include Fine Print, Media, Painting or Sculpture. Design degree options include Fashion, Jewellery and Metalwork, Ceramics and Glass, Textiles, Visual Communication and Product Design. To combine design or fine art with a teaching qualification there is also the option to study a Joint Honours in Fine Art or Design and Education.

Studio-based programmes require a portfolio submission. There are chances throughout the year to visit NCAD for advice on portfolio preparation. Last year NCAD introduced a BA in Visual Culture, an opportunity to study the history and theory of art and design in a creative art school setting. Its emphasisis on digital culture and applying digital skills to the study and curation of contemporary art and design (it doesn’t require a portfolio for entry).


With a focus on technology in art and design, Dún Laoghaire Institute of Art, Design and Technology (IADT) at its campus by the sea has students busy making films, building sets and organising gigs – there’s a big emphasis on cultural events management at IADT, with courses in the subject. Other degree courses include animation, photography and design for stage and screen.