Composer in residence – Michael Gallen on surviving as an artist –

Composer Michael Gallen writes for Culture about his experience as an Artist in Residence at Albert Cottages, as part of Dublin City Arts Office’s Residential Spaces scheme, and the fiscal (and spacial) realities of making art in Ireland today.

Over the past few years, as the scale of my artistic projects have grown, I have often felt the need to get out of Dublin in order to do my work. My driving licence was a ticket to a new type of freedom; suddenly I realised that I could sub-let my room, pack my van with books and musical instruments and head off to some remote cottage, rented for the whole winter for the cost of a month in a Liberties house-share.

Many of my most successful peers in Ireland still live in a state of suspended studenthood, scrambling for both fiscal breathing-space and actual, physical room in order to imagine their

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