The Irish Film Institute (Formerly IFC)

  • Location: Temple Bar
  • Architect: O’Donnell + Tuomey
  • Completed: 1992

Although not directly facing out onto MHS, the Irish Film Centre's presence is felt through its discreet entrance beside the Gallery of Photography. It was formerly the Quaker Meeting House and consists of buildings varying in age, condition and architectural quality organised around a covered yard. The building accommodates all aspects of film culture with two cinemas, the national film archive, a restaurant / bar and classrooms and offices for various functions.

The brief was in large part determined by the existing Quaker buildings and the budget did not allow for a complete restoration. The result was that decorative work was only conducted in some parts of the buildings while other parts were restored with great care. Both cinemas were housed within the walls of existing rooms. New elements such as the maple cabinet containing the acoustic insulation in cinema one were added to these rooms. The principal areas of new building were the foyer, the projection room and the archive.

The main entrance from Eustace Street leads one down a long, tunnel-like and floor-lit corridor towards the glass-covered yard of the foyer. The floor of the foyer is limestone in concentric circles separated by steel bands. A new building made of smooth red brick on Sycamore Street contained the archive. The limestone-clad projection box is at a high level between the two cinemas and its slender supporting columns form an informal portico leading to MHS.

Posted by Reflecting City Team on Wednesday, September 17, 2008
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