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2024 Programme Announcement

Announcing gaplab!


‘Only those who risk going too far can possibly find out how far they can go.’ — T.S. Eliot

As it heads towards its 20th anniversary in 2025, the Irish Architecture Foundation (IAF) is proud to announce gaplab, a new graduate-architect programme which aligns with the IAF’s core mission to grow the desire for architecture in Ireland.

Many graduate-architects wish to direct their training, skills and capacities toward cultural programming, building new knowledge or establishing architecture-specific initiatives that will enhance and extend the public’s engagement with architecture. Yet, there remains limited opportunities to access support, professional training or a peer group to ensure this desire is translated into action. For these architects a gap exists between sincere and urgent intention and real and purposeful impact. From now, through gaplab, the IAF will work to bridge this, strengthening human capital and capacity among architects in public engagement practice in architecture in Ireland.

Additionally, after five years of intense education, architects embark on their creative career full of ambition and potent potential to put their imagination to work to address some of society’s most pressing social, spatial and material challenges. Many more want to continue their personal creative development that the collective-design studio of university provided. Through gaplab, the IAF aims to give space to graduate-architects, to sustain their vital imaginations, to foster their capacity to innovate and to support risk. As the IAF embarks on its own next phase of making more room for architecture, we believe providing this space to architects has become a fundamental and undeniable requirement in advancing architecture’s critical and cultural potential in Ireland.

So from today, through specific invited commissions and regular open calls, prospective participants of gaplab will find a home within the IAF. Their ideas will be developed and their instincts trusted in the company of a collaborative peer group and the IAF team, mentored by an international peer panel. They will be afforded opportunities to experiment, embrace risk and take time to advance their individual and collective experiences, desires and directions in the ever-expanding field of architecture. Their work will be recognised and supported via the various forms of capital – social, cultural and economic – available to the IAF. Through gaplab the IAF will offer graduate architects a platform to develop their own work and to produce new knowledge with reference to the wider social, economical and political contexts in which architecture exists and operates. 

Like all laboratories, gaplab is conceptually and literally a room for both the production of new knowledge and more people who think differently about architecture.


Design by Fred Swart.