I recently ventured to the new Arts and Business Campus in Drumcondra (or ABCD). A friend of mine owns Studio4, a fantastic recording studio based there. I had intended just to check his workplace out, not realising I was being welcomed into an arts Mecca in the process.
While maintaining its old-school charm (literally), the old School For The Deaf has been transformed into a hub for arts and business expression. It’s set up to be self-funding, working under an ethos of collaboration – a model proving to be successful in the face of arts funding-cuts. A sister building to another successful hub, The Chocolate Factory, the same welcoming spirit exists at ABCD, whether you want to join a class, check out an exhibition or simply sit and have a coffee.
Within the building is a coffee shop, a juice bar & wholefoods store brimming with fresh produce, a gallery space, a pizza place, a doughnut company, plenty of seating and work space, and a little chill-out area with couches and a wood-burning stove. And that’s just for starters. Behind the scenes there’s a gym and other fitness studios; dance, music, theatre and Montessori schools; art and photography studios… The list goes on, and it’s growing all the time.
The fruits of ABCD’s labour are showcased in Drumcondra Village Market, on site every Sunday from 11:00-17:00. It’s free, it lets you explore the whole the building, and it promises such delights as puppet shows, a pop-up record shop, and a pizza taster banquet.