Dr Paul Caffrey

BA (Mod), MA, PhD

Lecturer in the history of art & design, research fellow and codirector of the MA Design History & Material Culture

Principal research interests include Irish design history, interior architecture, the material culture of jewellery and miniature painting (works on enamel and ivory). Current research includes a reappraisal of Sir Alfred Chester Beatty's collection of enamels in the National Gallery of Ireland which was formed by Jacob Nachemsohn in the 1920s. Recent publications include contributions to: Ireland: Crossroads of Art and Design, 1690-1840 at the Art Institute of Chicago (Yale University Press, 2016), Soldiers of Christ The Knights Hospitaller and the Knights Templar in Ireland (Four Courts Press, 2016), Portrait Miniatures: Artists, Functions and Collections at the Tansey Foundation, Celle Castle (Michael Imhof Verlag, 2018) and Exhibiting Art in Georgian Ireland (Irish Georgian Society, 2018). He is a regular contributor to the Irish Arts Review.


Studied history of art and architecture and modern English literature at Trinity College, University of Dublin. He worked for the Office of Public Works at William Chambers’s Casino at Marino, Dublin and was the curator of Castletown House, Co. Kildare. In 1991 he was appointed a lecturer in the Faculty of History of Art and Design and Complementary Studies (now the School of Visual Culture) at NCAD. Since 1999, he has been a trustee of the NCAD staff prize for students and of the Thomas Dammann Junior Memorial Trust awards for research in art and design (chairman of trustees since 2002). One of his interests is the contribution of the chivalric and military orders to European and Middle Eastern history and in particular the art and architecture associated with the Order of Malta. 


Publications (selected)

(2018) Catalogue entries on Samuel Andrews, William Bate, John Comerford, Nathaniel Hone, Samuel Lover, Edwin Thomas Roberts for the Gorry Gallery, Dublin, Exhibition of Irish 18th, 19th and 20th Century Irish Art, May 2018.

(2018) 'Gustavus Hamilton and Charles Robertson' in (W. Laffan & R. Kenny) Exhibiting Art in Georgian Ireland, Irish Georgian Society.

(2018) ‘Sarah Walker Trees Against the Sky' Irish Arts Review, vol. 35, no.2, 2018.

(2018) ‘Power and Beauty The Art of Sir Oswald Birley' [book review] Irish Arts Review, vol. 35, no.1, 2018, p. 134

(2018)  ‘Made in Cork The Arts and Crafts Movement 1880s to 1920s' [book review]  Irish Arts Review, vol. 35, no.1, 2018, pp 140-141.

(2018) 'Art and Style Bringing the Creative Imagination to a Wider Audience' Irish Arts Review, vol. 35 no.1, 2018, p. 13.

(2017) 'Stephanie Johnson', Irish Arts Review, vol. 34, no. 3, p. 112.

(2017) ‘European Enamels in the National Gallery of Ireland' in Portrait Miniatures Artists, Functions and Collections (eds Bernd Pappe & Juliane Schmieglitz Otten) Michael Imhof Verlag, 2017, pp. 11, 132-143, 253, 256.

(2016) ‘Dream weaver Nigel Cheney Textile Artist’ Irish Arts Review, vol. 33, no.2, Summer, pp. 202-3.

(2015) ‘Denis Brownell Murphy’ in (eds A. Beyer, B. Savoy & W. Tegethoff) Allgemeines Kunstlerlexikon, De Gruyter, Berlin.

(2015) ‘Edward Miles’ in (eds A. Beyer, B. Savoy & W. Tegethoff) Allgemeines Kunstlerlexikon, De Gruyter, Berlin.

(2015) ’William Gordon Mein’ in (eds A. Beyer, B. Savoy & W. Tegethoff) Allgemeines Kunstlerlexikon, De Gruyter, Berlin.

(2015) ‘Anne Mee’ [born Foldstone] in (eds A. Beyer, B. Savoy & W. Tegethoff) Allgemeines Kunstlerlexikon, De Gruyter, Berlin.

(2015) ‘John Medina’ in (eds A. Beyer, B. Savoy & W. Tegethoff) Allgemeines Kunstlerlexikon, De Gruyter, Berlin.

(2015) ’Alexander Marshal’ in (eds A. Beyer, B. Savoy & W. Tegethoff) Allgemeines Kunstlerlexikon, De Gruyter, Berlin.

(2015) ’Charles Maucourt’ in (eds A. Beyer, B. Savoy & W. Tegethoff) Allgemeines Kunstlerlexikon, De Gruyter, Berlin.

(2015) ‘John Mayhew’ [of Ince and Mayhew] in (eds A. Beyer, B. Savoy & W. Tegethoff) Allgemeines Kunstlerlexikon, De Gruyter, Berlin.

(2015) ‘A Regency Buck: Adam Buck (1759-1833) by Peter Darvall.’  Irish Arts Review, vol. 32, no. 4, Winter, p. 582 [book review].

(2015) ‘The Visual Culture of the Hospitaller Knights of the Priory of Ireland.’ chapter in (eds M. Browne & C. O Clabaigh) Soldiers of Christ: The Knights Hospitaller and the Knights Templar in Medieval Ireland, Four Courts Press, Dublin.

(2015) ‘European Portrait Miniatures Artists, Functions and Collections (eds. B. Pappe, J. Schmieglitz, G. Walczak)’ [book review] The Burlington Magazine, October, no. 1351, vol. clvii, pp. 714-715.

(2015) ‘Jewels above all prize Portrait Miniatures on Enamel and Ivory’ chapter and catalogue entries in (eds W. Laffan, & C. Monkhouse with Fitzpatrick, L.) IRELAND Crossroads of Art and Design, 1690-1840. The Art Institute of Chicago and Yale University Press, Chicago New Haven and London. 

(2014) ‘Wallpaper in Ireland, 1700-1900 by David Skinner.’ Irish Arts Review, vol. 31, no. 3, Autumn, pp.132-133 [book review].

(2014) ‘Samuel Lover’ in (eds A. Beyer, B. Savoy & W. Tegethoff) Allgemeines Kunstlerlexikon, De Gruyter, Berlin.

(2014) ‘Irish Miniature Painters.’ and biographical entries in (eds A. Carpenter & N. Figgis) Art and Architecture of Ireland Painting 1600-1900, vol. 2, Royal Irish Academy and The Paul Mellon Centre, Yale University Press, Dublin, London and New Haven.

(2013) ‘Silhouettes and Keepsakes.’ Irish Arts Review, vol. 30, no.4, Winter, pp. 90-91.

(2012) ‘Miniature Portraits from the Comerford Collection’ chapter in (ed.  L. Mulvin) The Fusion of Neo-Classical Principles, Wordwell, Dublin.

(2011) ‘Nationality and Representation: the Coinage Design Committee (1926-8) and the Formation of a Design Identity in the Irish Free State’ chapter 4 in (eds L. King and E. Sisson) Ireland, Design and Visual Culture: Negotiating Modernity, 1922-1992, Cork University Press, pp. 74-89.

(2010) contributed to the English language version of Gilles d’Aubigny and Bernard Capo The Hospitallers of Malta, Editions du Triomphe, Paris.

(2009) ‘Primary Text Commentary’ and ‘Design in Ireland: Report of the Scandinavian Design Group in Ireland, April 1961’ The Journal of Modern Craft, vol.2, no.3, November 2009, pp. 325-344.

(2009) ‘Rupert Barber’ in (eds J. McGuire & J. Quinn) Royal Irish Academy Dictionary of Irish Biography, RIA Cambridge University Press.

(2009) ‘Henry Pelham’ in (eds J. McGuire & J. Quinn) Royal Irish Academy Dictionary of Irish Biography, RIA Cambridge University Press.

(2009) ‘Denis Brownell Murphy’ in (eds J. McGuire & J. Quinn) Royal Irish Academy Dictionary of Irish Biography, RIA Cambridge University Press.

(2009) ‘Samuel Lover’ in (eds J. McGuire & J. Quinn) Royal Irish Academy Dictionary of Irish Biography, RIA Cambridge University Press.

(2009) ‘Sampson Towgood Roch’ in (eds J. McGuire & J. Quinn) Royal Irish Academy Dictionary of Irish Biography, RIA Cambridge University Press.

(2009) ‘Michael Kean’ in (eds J. McGuire & J. Quinn) Royal Irish Academy Dictionary of Irish Biography, RIA Cambridge University Press.

(2009) ‘Horace Hone’ in (eds J. McGuire & J. Quinn) Royal Irish Academy Dictionary of Irish Biography, RIA Cambridge University Press.

(2009) ‘Gustavus Hamilton’ in (eds J. McGuire & J. Quinn) Royal Irish Academy Dictionary of Irish Biography, RIA Cambridge University Press. Appointed an editorial advisor and contributor to this publication.

(2009) Kildare Street and University Club: Catalogue of the Kildare Street and University Club Collection of Paintings, Drawings, Watercolours and Prints, updated edition, Snoeck-Ducaju & Zoon, Ghent.

(2008) ‘The Comerford Collection’ Irish Arts Review, vol. 25, no.4, Winter, pp. 96-99.

(2008) ‘Reflections of an Age of Grace [preview of the Hugh Douglas Hamilton (1740-1808) A Life in Pictures (ed. A. Hodge) catalogue and exhibition at the National Gallery of Ireland]’ Irish Arts Review, vol. 25, no 3, Autumn, pp. 110-113.

(2008) ‘Miniature Painting in Ireland’ (ed. B. Lalor) The Encyclopedia of Ireland, Yale University Press, New Haven and London.

(2007) ‘The Shannon Collection’ Irish Arts Review, vol. 24, no.4, Winter, pp.116-121.

(2007) ‘Nathaniel Hone RA (1718-84): An Enamel Self-portrait in Vandyke Dress’ Irish Arts Review, vol. 24, no.1, Spring, pp.102-3.

(2006) ‘Perfect Likeness European and American Portrait Miniatures from the Cincinnati Art Museum by J. Aronson & M.E. Wieseman’ Irish Arts Review, vol.23, Summer 2006, p.136 [book and exhibition review].

(2006) ‘A guide to Sources for the History of Material Culture in Ireland 1500-2000 by Toby Barnard’ Journal of Design History, vol.19, no.2, Summer, pp.180-3 [book review].

(2005) ‘Forty Shades of Green: a Convergence of Irish Art and Craft (eds B. Kennedy, S. Cutts & E. Van Horn)’ Irish Arts Review, vol.22, Spring, pp.139-40 [book and exhibition review].

(2004) ‘Irish Design 1984-2004’ Irish Arts Review, vol. 21, Autumn, pp.86-9.

(2004) ‘Samuel Lover’ in (ed. C. Matthew) Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press.

(2004) ‘Denis Brownell Murphy’ in (ed. C. Matthew) Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press.

(2004) ‘Michael Kean’ in (ed. C. Matthew) Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press.

(2004) ‘Charles Cromwell Ingham’ in (ed. C. Matthew) Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press.

(2004) ‘John Comerford’ in (ed. C. Matthew) Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press.

(2004) ‘Samuel Collins’ in (ed. C. Matthew) Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press.

(2004) ‘Sir Frederic William Burton’ (ed. C. Matthew) Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press.

(2004) ‘Adam Buck’ (ed. C. Matthew) Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press.

(2004) ‘Francis Bindon’ in (ed. C. Matthew) Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press.

(2003) ‘Irish Portrait Miniatures’ in The Irish Antique DealersAssociation Yearbook 2003-2004, Dublin.

(2003) ‘Post War Furniture Design’ (ed. B. Lalor) The Encyclopedia of Ireland, Gill and Macmillan, Dublin.

(2003) ‘Miniature Painting in Ireland’ (ed. B. Lalor) The Encyclopedia of Ireland, Gill and Macmillan, Dublin.

(2003) Kildare Street and University Club: Catalogue of the Kildare Street and University Club Collection of Paintings, Drawings, Watercolours and Prints, Snoeck-Ducaju & Zoon, Ghent [de luxe subscriber edition].

(2003) ‘Archives and Collections: The National Irish Visual Art Library Design Archives at the National College of Art and Design, Dublin.’ Journal of Design History, vol. 16, no. 4, pp. 341-348.

(2003) ‘Foreword’ in Alastair Laing and Richard Walker Portrait Miniatures in National Trust Houses Volume I: Northern Ireland, vol. I, National Trust, London.

(2003) ‘Irish Material Culture: the Shape of the Field’ CIRCA, 103, pp. 29-32.

(2003) ‘Material Culture and the Object’, convenor and guest editor, material culture theme issue of CIRCA, 103, p. 28.

(2003) ‘William Sadler II (1782-1839)’ in 2002 Review, Adams & Co., Dublin.

(2002) The Studio of Nathaniel Hone RHA (1871-1917) exhibition catalogue [with Dr Julian Campbell], The Gorry Gallery, June.

(2002) ‘John Ramage: The Wandering Portraitist’ Irish Arts Review, Summer, pp. 96-99.

(2001) ‘Design History and Material Culture in Ireland: An Outline of Sources and Resources’ An Leabharlann The Irish Library, second series, vol. 15, no. 3/4, pp.119-123.

(2000) Thought Lines Four an anthology of research edited by Paul Caffrey, National College of Art and Design, Dublin.

(2000) Treasures to Hold Irish and English Miniatures 1650-1850 from the National Gallery of Ireland Collection, National Gallery of Ireland, Dublin. Hardback and paperback editions.

(2000) ‘Design for Industry: the Industrial Design Consultancy and Product Design in the Republic of Ireland’ in `From the Edge: Art and Design in 20th Century Ireland’ CIRCA, Summer, pp. 7-9.

(2000) ‘The Colleen Bawn and the Colleen Dhu - Peasants of the County of Galway’ catalogue entry, Gorry Gallery, Dublin.

(1999) John Comerford and the Portrait Miniature in Ireland c.1620-1850, Kilkenny Archaeological Society, Kilkenny and Dublin.

(1998) ‘The Scandinavian Ideal: A Model for Design in Ireland’ Scandinavian Journal of Design History, vol. 8, pp. 32-43.

(1997) ‘Ireland’ [A history of interior design] (ed. J. Banham) Encyclopedia of Interior Design, 2 vols, Fitzroy Dearborn, London and Chicago.

(1997) ‘An Introduction to the Portrait Miniature and Miniature Painting in Ireland’ exhibition catalogue, Gorry Gallery, Dublin.

(1997) ‘Denis Handy, Architect and Designer’ (ed. S. Pendergast) Contemporary Designers, St James Press, Detroit, Michigan.

(1997) ‘Arthur Gibney, Architect and Interior Designer’ (ed. S. Pendergast) Contemporary Designers, St James Press, Detroit, Michigan.

(1997) ‘Gearoid O Conchubhair, Furniture and Industrial Designer’ (ed. S. Pendergast) Contemporary Designers, St James Press, Detroit, Michigan.

(1997) ‘Paul Hogan, Design Management Consultant’ (ed. S. Pendergast) Contemporary Designers, St James Press, Detroit, Michigan.

(1997) ‘Sybil Connolly, Couturiere, Designer of Textiles, Ceramics, Glass and Interiors’ (ed. S. Pendergast) Contemporary Designers, St James Press, Detroit, Michigan.

(1996) ‘Present’ in Design for Innovation, NCAD 250/ Smurfit Industrial Design Exhibition, pp. 6-20.

(1996) Paula Rego Graphic Work, Graphic Studio Gallery, Dublin.

(1995) Castletown, Office of Public Works, Dublin [new edition].

(1995) ‘William Ashford by John Comerford’ catalogue entry, Gorry Gallery, Dublin.

(1991) ‘Correspondence: Bosanquet or Bosanquet?’ Country Life, vol. CLXXXV, no. 48, (28 November) p. 66.

(1991) ‘Lord Edward Fitzgerald by Horace Hone’ catalogue entry, Gorry Gallery, Dublin.

(1990) ‘The Long Gallery, Castletown’ GPA Music in Great Irish Houses.

(1990) Castletown, Castletown Foundation, Celbridge.

(1987) ‘John Comerford, Portrait Painter’ Irish Arts Review, vol. IV, no. 3, pp. 42-48.

(1986) ‘Sampson Towgood Roch, Miniaturist’ Irish Arts Review, vol. III, no. 4, front cover & pp. 1, 14-21.

(1986) ‘Samuel Lover's Achievement as a Painter’ Irish Arts Review, vol. III, no. 1, pp. 51-4.


Collaborations include those with The Art Institute of Chicago’s curatorial team for the exhibition and accompanying publication Ireland Crossroads of Art and Design, 1690-1840 (2015); with University College, Dublin, to whose publications he was a contributor: see The Fusion of Neo-classical Principles, edited by Dr Lynda Mulvin (2012) and see Art & Architecture of Ireland, volume 2, edited by Dr Nicola Figgis (2014) both of the School of Art History and Cultural Policy, UCD; and with the National Gallery of Ireland, whose collection of British and Irish miniatures he catalogued, see Treasures to Hold (2000).
 


Curator of the following exhibitions: 

John Comerford and the Portrait Miniature in Ireland c.1620-1850 Rothe House, Kilkenny (1999)

The Portrait Miniature in Ireland c.1620-1850 The Hunt Museum, Limerick (1999)

Treasures to Hold: Irish and English Miniatures 1650-1850 from the National Gallery of Ireland Collection National Gallery of Ireland, Dublin (2000)

The Studio of Nathaniel Hone RHA (1871-1917) Gorry Gallery, Dublin (2002)


Curatorial consultant:

Ireland: Crossroads of Art and Design, 1690-1840 The Art Institute of Chicago, 2015

Contact Dr Paul Caffrey