Mick O'Kelly, PhD, MFA, BFA


We need to build environments to support men and women negotiating dementia in their everyday lives. To produce spaces where a person feels at peace and create agency.

Current Work

Senior lecturer in the School of Art. Supervisor to PhD, MFA, BFA students in art practice and it's relationship to contemporary culture.

Personal Hero

Michael Asher

Words of Strength

Collaboration, endurance, challenging, make things happen


To bring together all transversal research platforms, skill-sets and know-how, build environments to support men and women negotiating dementia in their everyday lives. To produce spaces where a person feels at peace and create agency.


Mick is developing an art practice that is more inclusive to people with cognitive impairment. He aims to gain a deeper understanding of brain health / dementia while working with carers, clinicians, researchers, mentors at GBHI, and to develop strategies for social inclusion.


Mick aims to learn about the dimensions of cognitive impairment and brain health in a clinical environment with GBHI experts, to participate in the collective discussion, and to develop a network of collaboration with Atlantic Fellows to address the challenges of dementia


The number of women and men living with dementia in Ireland is increasing substantially. Art has the capacity to produce new knowledge and creative imaginings that can influence design solutions, care environments, and formation of policy.

Education & Experience

Mick O’Kelly completed his PhD with Interface at the University of Ulster Northern Ireland in 2009. He has studied for his BFA at the National College of Art and Design Dublin, (1982-1985) and did his MFA at the California Institute of the Arts USA, (1995-1997). He is a visiting artist to art schools in Ireland, UK, Germany, France, Finland, Brazil, and the USA. He has exhibited nationally and internationally and engages in contextual art initiatives in gallery and museum structure and beyond.

Ongoing concerns in his work and research acknowledge the changing nature of contemporary art, and issues of situated practice, location and context. The research and work explore art tactics as urban negotiations to produce social spaces of intervention. Projects operate within states of contingency and indeterminacy where the dimensions of practice occupy an aesthetic-ethical-spatial-politics. The work brings together different methods of practice and platforms of collaborative practice and urban actors engaged in social production of space. Frequently these strategies use informal kinds of knowledge and exchange of know-how and making-do tactics to negotiate everyday urban practices.

Awards & Honors

Arts Council Research Travel Bursary
Urban Informality Lagos Nigeria
Research Ireland Research Bursary