Exciting new gallery space at ETL Roscommon!

Local businesswoman and contemporary artist, Rita Oates, has confirmed that she is about to launch a new gallery space at her shop on Main Street, Roscommon.

The Anam Gallery will feature original works from Irish artists across a broad medium spectrum including millinery, glassworks, woodworks, sculpture and painting.

Rita, who runs ETL Craft and Giftware with husband Michael, recently featured on the popular Retail Tea Break podcast with retail advisor Melissa Moore to discuss the new venture.

“Anam Gallery was one of these things that started as a little idea and just became a mountain. It has worked out ten times better than I had ever imagined,” she said.

  “I decided I was going to move a partition in my shop, and as my husband would tell you, a lot of what I suggest is introduced as a small thing like just moving a partition!

“Our building at ETL was built in the 1800s by the Bank of Ireland. It’s a beautiful limestone building on the Main Street in Roscommon. At the back of the shop there was a coach house and for 30 years it was used as storage space. I said we’d move the partition, strip the walls back to what it was and have these beautiful stone walls upstairs and downstairs. In that space we have created an art gallery, not just for my own art but for other original pieces too”.

Rita, who featured at Art Source in the RDS last month, said featured art would include beautifully created clothing items such as hats as well as glass, sculptures and woodwork.

“I’ll have a calendar with ten separate months in which we’ll exhibit. Roscommon is a beautiful town; within five minutes of ETL you have the park, the old jail, the Abbey, as well as beautiful restaurants like Gleeson’s Townhouse, and Rogue and Co and other shops. You can come to Roscommon, look at an art gallery and visit some of these sights and just enjoy your day here,” she said.

Podcast presenter Melissa Moore was suitably impressed and advised Tourism Ireland to take note, describing Roscommon town as “stunning with everything available on your doorstep”. She assured listeners that Rita’s new gallery space as beautiful and said she believed the wider community would be grateful for it.

“Joe Caslin will be one of the first exhibitors. It’s going to be exciting and it’s my own opportunity to support other artists. Originals are different, and that’s nothing against prints,” Rita said.

“I love art and I love what it communicates. It’s like music. It can change our humour. I believe children get it more than we do and I’ve a few things lined up for them in this space. I’m the mother of four teachers and two of them are very involved in art in their teaching careers so it’s going to be exciting and different,” she concluded.