Skip to main content


RHA Gallery hosts the very first This is Art! Exhibition

3 min read

RHA Gallery hosts the very first This is Art! Exhibition

3 min read


RHA Gallery hosts the very first This is Art! Exhibition

In its 200th year, the Royal Hibernian Academy (RHA) is hosting the This is Art! exhibition.

Don’t miss this very special showcase of an amazing selection of the 15,000 entries received since the  launch of This is Art! in 2021.

This is Art! is the annual art competition run by RTÉ in association with the Creative Ireland Programme, geared specifically toward young people aged 0-18 and taking place throughout the island of Ireland.

Since 2021, This is Art! has been a strategic partner in our Cruinniú na nÓg celebrations, Ireland’s day of free creativity for young people, and we love seeing the huge level of participation and creative expression.

Themes to date – This is Inspiration!

Each year, young artists of all abilities respond visually to a theme, so this exhibition will feature three themes in total:

  • ‘This is Now!’ from 2021 invited young artists to respond creatively to Covid-19 lockdowns. Hope, sadness, confusion, anger, and joy converge in an invaluable time capsule of creativity from a time that rocked the world.
  • ‘This is Extraordinary!’ from 2022. With a return to normality on the horizon, this theme asked young creatives to submit artworks that painted a picture of their thoughts, feelings, hopes and concerns as we transitioned cautiously to a new freedom.
  • ‘This is Inspiration! from 2023. The latest theme asked young people to let their originality and self-expression shine by sharing what inspires them to be creative.
- Minister Catherine Martin, TD

"This exhibition is a fantastic reflection of the boundless creativity and enthusiasm of our young citizens."

Commenting on the This is Art! exhibition, Director-General of RTÉ, Kevin Bakhurst said:

“The This is Art! competition celebrates creativity among young people across this island and has been an important part of RTÉ’s support of our youngest artists over the last three years. RTÉ is proud once again to partner with Creative Ireland in this special collaboration with the RHA in its 200th year to provide another opportunity to showcase some incredible art, and celebrate young artists and their artistic creations.

Well done and thank you to all those who have participated in This is Art! since it started three years ago. This is a celebration of all of you, and of your inspirational creativity.”

Minister for Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media, Catherine Martin said:

“Many congratulations to the talented young people who have submitted 15,000 artworks and participated in This is Art! since it first launched in 2021. This exhibition is a fantastic reflection of the boundless creativity and enthusiasm of our young citizens.

It is wonderful to be able to bear witness to it and I hope that they will continue to express themselves so eloquently for many years to come.”

Suzanne Kelly, Head of Young People’s Programming, RTÉ said:

“This Is Art! began in 2020 as an RTÉ Young Peoples’s digital art initiative; a way to connect kids and young adults through a pandemic, through art. It tapped into the most awe-inspiring creativity and delivered the most poignant digital visual record. Now moving into its fourth year, This Is Art! continues to go from strength to strength and I am so thrilled that in collaboration with the RHA and  Creative Ireland Programme, RTÉ can bring together under one roof some of artworks uploaded over the past three years for everyone to celebrate, appreciate and enjoy.

I would particularly like to commend all of the artists that have taken the time to participate over the past three years, congratulations to everyone involved – This is Art!!!”

Above: Minister Catherine Martin and Lord Mayor John OLeary of Waterford at the This is Art! 2023 launch in Waterford. Photo by Patrick Browne

For more on the exhibition, visit this link

For more on This is Art!, click here

Or click here to meet the  This Is Art! 2023 competition winners

Stay up to date