The Class 


Support Group for Artists & Academics

A peer support group for graduates from NCAD Masters programmes with socially-engaged, participatory and collaborative practices

Critical Friends is a network of professional practitioners with socially- engaged, participatory and collaborative practices who have graduated at a Masters level from NCAD, and are interested in developing their practice through peer-to-peer support, dialogue and collaboration.
Operating as a trans-disciplinary space, Critical Friends welcomes artists, designers, educators, activists, writers, theatre makers and those working in the wider cultural, social and community sectors. Through presentations, themed discussions, reading groups and collaborative ventures, Critical Friends intends to provide an ongoing critical support structure post MA.

Supported by - Dr. Fiona Whelan (Currently developing MA Social Imagination for 2020 and Coordinator Studio+ Communities of Place and Interest module for BA Fine Art since 2018; Previously Joint Programme Coordinator MA Socially Engaged Art and Further Education 2013-19). 



'SYSTEMS' (ongoing) 

Participatory Interactive Art

 ‘A Dissenting Voice Amongst the Dissenting Voices’ 

Engaging the Disengaged: The Complimentary Convergence of Development Education and Social Art Practice 

The purpose of this programme is too theoretically, analytically and practically explore the link between the disciplines of ‘Development Education’ (DE) and ‘Social Art Practice’ (SAP). Appropriately, the study aimed to create a combined pedagogical learning environment that performs an aspect of social change through participation with young adults enrolled in education. Initially, the research fieldwork was attained by undertaking a reflective practice methodology with a group of disengaged and disadvantaged individuals from a YouthReach (YR) institute in Dublin City. Apt to the participant cohort mechanism, the researcher and the participants produced two modes of artistic practice: Bourriaud (1998) and Beuys (1973) art practices of relational aesthetics and the social sculpture will meet to expand the potential of art and transform social and human relations. Together they complement the new learning paradigm by attaching a feature of socio-economic struggles that directly impacts the life experience of an individual. The educational paradigm in question immerses the participating young adults into a learning experience that is formed from a series of themes that are identified in the literature, which are instrumental to the identities of DE and SAP.       

'View Infographic' 


 The Youth Reach 


 The Group 

'ZERO-SUM GAME' (ongoing)

Participatory Interactive Art

To contribute in ending excessive societal overconsump- tion in Ireland To develop individualsʼ understanding of societal over- consumption in a participatory setting, in order to pro- vide confidence, support, and practical experience neces- sary to become an ethical consumer To create a pedagogy that highlights how overconsump- tion is harmful towards our natural resources, so the participating individuals can successfully become mobil- ised ethical consumers that take conscious action against destructive practices and policies (reduce, reuse and recycle). Aspire to inspire about the importance of preserving Irelands and worlds natural resources, via a Social Engaged Art Practice and transformative educational par- ticipatory movement, which encourages the individual to live a more planet-conscious life. To target the demographic of Irelands wealthiest in an attempt to coax their over-consuming life patterns via art intervention techniques 

 'View Infographic' 

'PLAY YOUR PART' (ongoing)

Collaborative Practice

An illustrative and creative lesson plan which aims to teach people to be conscious about the biggest global challenges that humanity currently faces, and will face in the future. The ongoing classroom based project encourages creative thinking and critical engagement as the individual is tasked with illustrating their feelings and opinions on various issues, as well as providing creative solutions. In essence, what the student is setting out to achieve is to teach people about global issues in a creative, active and experiential setting.​ 'Play Your Part' will develop a growing sense of assurance in relation to the path the individual wishes to take in their life; as they find themselves ever so acutely aware of the multitude of challenges that face social development and cohesion and with that in mind is their purpose, if it is to be a true and virtuous one, must aim to bring a fresh positive change. With this somewhat profound sense of responsibility and belief in the vital role art expression and transformative education will play throughout the fourth industrial revolution and the shaping of our societal future, as it is his intention to promote the cultivation of ‘change' throughout the informal and non-formal education paradigm. 


 The Exhibit 

© 2019 by Tom Noone.

© 2019 by Tom Noone.

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Play Your Part

Education - Student Work - Front Page of Book