Irene Kernan has been appointed as the new director of Craft Scotland, succeeding Fiona Logue who is leaving after five years in the role.
The Edinburgh-based organisation promotes the contribution of craft to Scotland’s ‘cultural, economic and social well-being’. It is a Creative Scotland RFO (regularly funded organisation), receiving a total of £1million in revenue funding for 2018-21.
Kernan was previously director of Edinburgh Sculpture Workshop for 15 years, developing its artistic programme, fundraising and audience development. She was responsible for the organisation’s expansion, including the opening of a new £6.6m building in Newhaven, Edinburgh.
Commenting on her appointment, Kernan said: “I have followed the strong resurgence in craft for a number of years, both in my professional practice and personally. I am interested in how new networks, business models or collaborations could support the sustainability of the sector, and how new technologies could further develop opportunities for makers.”
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Catherine Holden, chair of the Craft Scotland Board, added: “We are delighted to welcome Irene Kernan to the Craft Scotland team. She brings a wealth of skills, knowledge, contacts and experience to the role which will be of huge benefit to makers at all stages of their careers and help us expand audiences and the market for craft. We very much look forward to Irene joining us.”
In addition to her role at Edinburgh Sculpture Workshop, in 2015 Kernan initiated the National Network of Production Facilities in Scotland. Made up of a group of 11 organisations spanning print-making, sculpture, photography and glass, the network provided affordable open-access spaces for making and production.
Kernan, who began her career working in marketing and fundraising roles for charities in Belfast and Dublin, has also delivered consultancy advice to charities and national organisations in relation to public projects. She takes up her new position at Craft Scotland on 17 September.
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