Ireland’s newest museum, the Museum of Literature Ireland (MoLI), will officially open its doors for the first time on Friday, 20th September 2019 at 5pm, in celebration of Culture Night 2019.
The museum, located in UCD Newman House on St. Stephen’s Green in Dublin, will celebrate Ireland’s literary culture and heritage from the past to the present, inspiring visitors of all ages to create, read and write. The museum is a partnership between University College Dublin (UCD) and the National Library of Ireland (NLI), supported by the Naughton Foundation and Fáilte Ireland.
MoLI draws inspiration from the work of James Joyce and is named for his best-known female character, Molly Bloom. Advance ticket sales for museum visits from Saturday September 21st at 10am are now live on www.moli.ie.
MoLI will feature immersive exhibitions that tell the story of Ireland’s literary heritage from early storytelling traditions to contemporary writers. On display will be a host of literary treasures from the National Library collections including the first copy of James Joyce’s Ulysses, as well as handwritten notebooks for Ulysses and personal letters, including one from Joyce to WB Yeats.
UCD Newman House has undergone significant restoration to accommodate the new museum. The works were completed under the guidance of architects Scott Tallon Walker. The historic building is the original site of UCD and a place of learning for a myriad of Irish writers including James Joyce, Flann O’Brien, Maeve Binchy and Mary Lavin. poet Gerard Manley Hopkins also lived in the building for a time.
MoLI will continue its history of education with a free-to-access national children’s programme, literary and writing events, readings, performances, debate and discussion, as well as a Joycean research library accessible to students, scholars and the public alike.
MoLI will host temporary exhibitions throughout the year, the first focusing on Limerick born writer and former Newman House student Kate O’Brien. MoLI also houses its own digital broadcasting studio, recording interviews, readings, discussions and events with writers, poets, artists, performers, educators and academics from Ireland and abroad. The in-house Radio MoLI broadcasts 24 hours a day across the world on radio.moli.ie.
Of the opening announcement, Simon O’Connor, Director of MoLI, said: “The combination of UCD’s beautiful Newman House, Joycean treasures from the NLI, secret gardens, shop and exquisite courtyard café will make the Museum of Literature Ireland more than a major addition to our country’s cultural landscape – MoLI will be a literary and educational oasis for locals and visitors alike, in the very heart of Dublin.”