Creative conference piques Róisín’s passion for Limerick

GASP! conference curator Róisín Buckley of Piquant Media.

A LIMERICK creative agency is celebrating its tenth anniversary this week by bringing industry events usually hosted in Dublin to the Treaty City.

Piquant Media, based in O’Connell Street, is hosting the GASP! conference on this Thursday and Friday when the focus is on the impacts of digital technology on human storytelling and the creative industry.

Piquant Project Manager Róisín Buckley, who is curator of GASP!, told the Limerick Post that the company’s love for all things creative, as well as all things Limerick, made the city an obvious choice for the event.

“We were very passionate about design, we’re passionate about the creative industry, and we’re passionate about our position here in Limerick. It’s very important to us that we are in Limerick City. We’re very involved in Limerick culture and business and it’s really important to us that this is a thriving industry in this area.

She pointed out a dearth of industry events going on in Limerick, saying this was part of the inspiration for bringing GASP! to the city.

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“We often found that the only time we were meeting other designers and other creators in that professional way was at business events and conferences in Dublin, so why don’t we do one in Limerick? We’re turning ten, let’s make this the reason to make it happen.”

Speaking on Piquant’s ties to the Limerick community, she credited the Limerick School of Art and Design as a leading reason for basing Piquant in the city in the first palce.

“It was the creative third level that lured us here in the beginning. And that’s why the students are very close to our hearts, we want to make sure we had something that was student-specific as well.”

Before joining Piquant as a producer and director, Róisín previously worked with RTÉ and the Irish Independent, but she said that when her latest venture first started taking off, she and her husband (co-director Conor Buckley) faced challenges as none of the directors had any formal business training.

She said that the key to helping Piquant survive was the training they received in Limerick to make the company a fully-fledged business.

“The first five years of the business, we very much operated as a group of freelancers working in the same place with a very similar vision.

“There was a ‘growing up’ that needed to happen. That was a challenge because we’re trained and really skilled creatives, but we didn’t necessarily have any business training. We did some training with the design Skillnet and that was really impactful for us and helped us really develop as a company. That was transformative for us,” she said.

The GASP! conference takes place on March 30 and 31, and will see many guest speakers take to the city for a series of talks, panels, and Q&As, including Nora Twomey of Oscar-nominated animation studio Cartoon Saloon, Jeannette Naughton of Prospero, and TikTok vertical manager Dave Morrissey.