Words: Dylan Murphy
“It was a dance floor built for dancers and without the watchful eyes of security or the distractions of the bar, it became the best in the country.”
Last night, Dublin Digital Radio shared a tweet that revealed that Dublin staple Jigsaw would be closing its doors.
The long-running underground cultural venue had been home to Dublin Digital Radio alongside a host of other collectives and groups in the capital, providing a space for experimentation and ultimately growth. The closure comes after an increasing amount of the city’s venues being replaced and closed in favour of hotels and other more profitable premises.
First emerging as Seomra Spraoi in 2004, the self-managed social centre ran on a not-for-profit basis and hosted a plethora of events and fundraisers before Seomra Spraoi was forced to shut after a Garda Síochána raid. It would later be redeveloped as a gig venue by former participants of Seomra Spraoi under the name Jigsaw and become the venue we all know today.
The closure as many will know is not an isolated incident. Back in 2019, The Bernard Shaw revealed it was relocating to the northside after its original building was being replaced by a hotel. Meanwhile, the pandemic has put the financial viability of other cultural spaces under the microscope, with the likes of Ja Ja Studios being threatened with eviction in increasingly uncertain times.
Speaking on the closure Dublin Digital Radio spoke fondly of the venue and Barry that ran it saying:
“It’s hard to imagine the station even existing without Jigsaw. It was where we launched the station with an 8 hour long all day party in October 2016. The energy that day ignited our enthusiasm for the party.”
“On that day, Barry didn’t charge us a dime. Every Station we raised went straight back into the station. We started the station with no funds – our first cash injection came from that party and Barry’s belief in the project an his generosity gave us the much needed kickstart we needed.”
We’ll miss Jigsaw dearly, here’s how Irish Twitter reacted to the news:
Elsewhere on District: Living Hell 013: This should be illegal.