WHO WE ARE
A little history. Irish American Writers & Artists formed in 2008 as a direct response to the suggestion that Irish Americans would not support an African-American presidential candidate. Now as a 501(c)3 organization, we are non-sectarian, non-partisan and welcome members of all backgrounds.
A little bragging. IAW&A has helped save St. Brigid’s Famine Church in NYC, raised funds for victims of the Haitian earthquake and inaugurated the annual Frank McCourt Prize for high school students who demonstrate a flair for creative writing. We donate to other arts organizations, to the St. Pat’s-for-All parade and have raised funds for Urban Librarians Unite, for Friends of Firefighters and have donated to The Dwelling Place of New York.
A vital mission. We celebrate the achievements of Irish American writers and artists, past and present and we aim to highlight, energize and encourage Irish Americans active in the arts. We support artistic freedom, human rights and social justice.
A vibrant community. At the suggestion of Malachy McCourt, we’ve held twice-monthly salons in NYC for seven years. At our salons, both accomplished and aspiring artists present their work. They might be poets, writers of fiction or non-fiction, musicians, singers, songwriters, actors, playwrights, storytellers, dancers, visual artists and comic performers. Artists find the salons places of community, encouragement, respect and collaboration. Salons are free and open to the public and the audiences always enjoy a good show.
We’ve taken salons “on the road” to New Jersey, Connecticut, Philadelphia, Chicago, St. Louis and Washington DC. We’ve held onlinetransatlantic salons with artists in Dublin and Belfast. As word of our salons has spread, we’ve welcomed visiting artists from across the US, from Ireland and other parts of the world.
Beyond the salon. We hold book launches, theater events and conversations with artists. In our ten-year existence, IAW&A has been recognized by Irish American organizations as an important contributor to NYC’s Irish American arts scene. We had the honor of holding a salon at the official 1916 Commemoration in New York, at the invitation of the Consulate of Ireland in New York.
Our annual fundraiser. Once each year, we give the Eugene O’Neill Lifetime Achievement Award to an individual for an exemplary contribution to the arts. The O’Neill is a rollicking party and important event on our social calendar. Supporting the O’Neill Award, our only annual fundraiser, is the way to continue our vital mission to celebrate our heritage, explore our traditions and embrace the future.