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Winter Lecture Series at Clare Museum – ‘Telling GAA Stories Through Objects’

1 February 2024

The Winter Lecture Series continues at Clare Museum on Wednesday, 14th February, at 7.30pm with a talk entitled ‘Telling GAA Stories Through Objects’.

Siobhán Doyle, from the National Museum of Ireland, will visit Clare Museum to discuss how the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) plays an influential role in Irish society that extends far beyond the sports. In popular imagination and experience, the GAA is often evoked through objects: medals passed down from generation to generation, jerseys worn in All-Ireland finals, Cúl Camps backpacks and much more.

This talk explores fascinating objects and their stories, which were uncovered by Siobhán Doyle when researching and writing her book A History of the GAA in 100 Objects. This talk highlights the challenges and the charms of telling stories through objects and how even the most ordinary, everyday objects can tell remarkable stories.

John Rattigan, Curator, Clare Museum, said: “We are delighted to host what promises to be a fascinating talk on the significance of sporting objects to the sports that they represent. Indeed, the museum provided a photograph of John Joe Doyle’s ‘goggles’ worn by him while playing for Clare in the 1930s.”

Siobhán Doyle is Curator of Glass, Ceramics and Asian Collections in the National Museum of Ireland. She holds a PhD in Museum Studies from Technological University Dublin. Siobhán’s research interests include Irish history, sports history, sociology and material culture. Her first book, A History of the GAA in 100 Objects, was published by Merrion Press in 2022 and has since been developed in a multi-media exhibition in the National Museum of Ireland, Collins Barracks. Siobhán has studied and worked in museums in Dublin for over ten years and joined the National Museum of Ireland in 2020. Her next book, A History of Irish Sport in 100 Objects will be published in Autumn 2025.

The talk begins at 7.30pm and admission is free of charge. While entry is free, there is likely to be a high level of interest in the talk, so those attending are asked to book a seat in advance by emailing

Telephone bookings will not be accepted.

In the coming months, there will be further lectures at Clare Museum on: Hair Hurling Balls; Clare connections in the Army Athletic Association in the 1920s and 1930s; and the 9th century Derreen Hoard from County Clare.

Caption: Siobhán Doyle, Curator of Glass, Ceramics and Asian Collections in the National Museum of Ireland.

Page last reviewed: 01/02/24

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