Show Home

Artist Name(s) Nathan Coley
Artwork title Show Home

A temporary public art project that brought a mythic, rural cottage into an urban environment, locating it on the roof of the former City Arts Centre's warehouse building in the heart of Dublin's financial district. It looked at the nature of the dream home; a concept that the modern property developer sold in a lifestyle package. Show Home by Nathan Coley was presented in Dublin by the Civil Arts Inquiry (2001-2004) with the support of the British Council.

Show Home brought a mythic, rural cottage into an urban environment, locating it on the roof of the former City Arts Centre's warehouse building in the heart of Dublin's financial district. The work highlighted the distinction between business and home and the disappearance of the latter in the inner city. Coley suggested:

 "...the point is to think not only about Show Home but to consider the evolution of the buildings, structures and landscapes that surround it."

Show Home
 was designed to reveal its own fabrication, looking real from one viewpoint, and unreal from another. Fabricating the cottage with only three sides was significant. It pushed the work away from being read as architecture and moved it closer to being sculpture and artifice dealing with notions of land use, building style and lifestyle.


A catalogue was produced by CityArts.


Nathan Coley graduated from Glasgow School of Art in 1989 with a BA in Fine Art and has had solo exhibitions at Centro Cultural de Belem, Lisbon in 2001 and Westfalischer Kunstverein, Munster in 2000. His work relating the trial of the Lockerbie bombers was included in Days Like These, a group exhibition at Tate Britain in 2003.

He is an artist whose work questions the way in which the values of a society are reflected in its architecture. His work is based around an interest in public space, and addresses issues such as the importance of place, the social value of architecture and the meaning and relevance of contemporary monuments. Coley has become known for works of public sculpture, yet this is only one part of his practice.

He was nominated for the Turner Prize 2007 for his exhibition at Mount Stuart, Isle of Bute, the public installation Camouflage Church, Santiago de Compostela, Spain and his contribution to the group exhibition Breaking Step - Displacement, Compassion and Humour in Recent British Art at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Belgrade, Serbia.

Commission Type Other,Independent Agent
Commissioner Name CityArts (formerly City Arts Centre), Locus +
Public Presentation dates March 25, 2004 - May 16, 2004
Partners Locus +, The British Council, North Tyneside Council
Artform Visual Arts,Architecture
Art Practice Arts Participation
Funded By The Arts Council,Dublin City Council
Location City Arts Centre, Dublin City Centre
County Dublin
Street Address 23-25 Moss Street, Dublin
Google Map Insert View this projects location
Content contributor(s) Jane Speller
Relationship to project City Arts Archivist and Information Officer
Public engagement

General public passing on foot at City Quay, and by bicycle and car from the Matt Talbot bridge. 

Associated professionals / Specialists involved

Director, Declan McGonagle
Curator, Alexa Coyne
Structural engineer, builders and technicians



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Nazareth Housing Association provides independent living houses for individuals and couples who are 65 and over and on the Sligo County Council housing list.  Nazareth Village is comprised of 48 houses in a garden setting.  The Village was financed as a public-private partnership between Nazareth Housing Association and Sligo County Council with funding from the Department of Environment, Community and Local Government.  

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