Numerous arts and culture institutions are engaged in transnational cooperation, ranging from major institutions to small cultural initiatives. Cooperation projects have either followed long standing relationships established through cultural diplomacy; availed of European funding from Creative Europe or Horizon 2020; or been supported through Culture Ireland to promote Irish arts and culture internationally. Arts and cultural institutions have engaged in activities such as festivals (music, film, etc.), exhibitions (art fairs, Biennale, architecture, photography etc.), conferences and workshops, information and training programmes. Professional cooperation activities within European and international networks include Culture Action Europe, European League of Institutes of the Arts (ELIA), European Network of Cultural Administration Training Centres (ENCATC), International Network for Contemporary Performing Arts (IETM), International Council of Museums (ICOM), International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS), International Federation of Arts Councils and Cultural Agencies (IFACCA).
There is a limited network of Irish arts and cultural centres internationally. For example, the Irish Cultural Centre/Centre Culturel Irlandais (CCI) in Paris has established a longstanding relationship with the city. The Centre presents the work of contemporary Irish artists, reinforces the rich heritage of Franco-Irish relations and fosters a vibrant and creative resident community. In addition to its diverse cultural programme, the CCI houses France’s primary multi-media library of resources on Ireland as well as significant historic archives and an old library. Inaugurated in 2002, the CCI is situated in the Collège des Irlandais, or Irish College, formerly home to a large collegiate community of Irish priests, seminarians and lay scholars whose origins stretch back to 1578. The Fondation Irlandaise has overseen the building since the Consular Decree of Napoléon Bonaparte consolidated the former Irish, English and Scots foundations and colleges in Paris into the Collège des Irlandais. The Fondation acts as a board comprising French and Irish members; it appoints the director and staff of the Centre Culturel Irlandais. The cultural programme of the centre is organised in partnership with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade and Culture Ireland and with the sponsorship from the Arts Council of Northern Ireland and the British Council.
The London Irish Centre organises a cultural programme of Irish arts and culture. The centre was set up as a charity to relieve and combat poverty, distress, financial hardship and sickness; to relieve those in need by reason of youth, age, ill health, disability, unemployment or other disadvantage; to promote Irish art, culture and heritage for the public benefit; and to advance education for the public benefit in Irish culture and language. The centre is supported through a range of partnerships from the Government of Ireland: Emigrant Support Programme; Culture Ireland; Irish Youth Foundation; the Ireland Funds; City of London; along with commercial and charitable sponsorship from Allied Irish Bank and others.
Founded in 1972, the Irish Arts Centre (New York) based in Manhattan is dedicated to projecting a dynamic image of Ireland and Irish America for the 21st century; building community with artists and audiences of all backgrounds; forging and strengthening cross-cultural partnerships; and preserving the evolving stories and traditions of Irish culture for generations to come. The centre’s multi-disciplinary programming operates in three core areas: performance — including live music, dance, theatre, film, literature, and the humanities; visual arts — including presentations and cultural exhibitions that tell the evolving Irish story; and education — with dozens of classes per week in Irish language, history, music, and dance.
The Irish Government has recently invested capital funding towards updating the infrastructure of a number of the international cultural centres, including EUR 2.5 million towards the EUR 60 million capital costs for a new building in New York City. The new building is due for completion in 2020.