Olivier Grossetete

The People Build

Festival Commission


If you've passed by Eyre Square or Waterside today, you may have seen what happens when art meets the elements. Overnight our two cardboard structures have responded to the weather so we’re keeping an eye on things and will update you on social media throughout the day. Please check our Facebook page and Twitter for updates.

Please note: For up to the minute updates, please stay tuned to social media.

At 1pm our crews will head out to the bridge to assess the situation. It is anticipated that the bridge will be moved shortly thereafter and that it will take approximately 1 hour for the bridge to reach dry land! We would expect that the demolition will take place at approximately 3pm as planned but please stay tuned for updates.

You are all welcome to join us at Waterside from 1pm to watch events unfold! Excitement guaranteed and a lovely setting.

EYRE SQUARE (Church steeple)
The official demolition is still planned for 6pm (but keep an eye on social media for any updates). However if you’re keen to see the structure, we recommend you head in early to check it out.

Please join us to celebrate this amazing feat today. You helped build it so come help us tear it down!


The People Build
won the hearts of Festival audiences in 2017 with Olivier Grossetete's large-scale reconstruction of the Aula Maxima in Eyre Square.

This year, GIAF has invited the artist to return to Galway to embark on not just one, but two large scale and highly ambitious projects. Under the guidance of Olivier Grossetete's team, The People Build will see hundred of volunteers (and the general public) create two large-scale and highly ambitious structures solely from cardboard. It will take place during the middle weekend of the Festival from July 20-22 and is entirely free.


Eyre Square | 11am - 4pm Friday 20 July
Waterside (Commercial Boat Club) 11am - 4pm Saturday July 21. Directions here.

Waterside (beside Commercial Boat Club) | See above post. Directions here.
Eyre Square | 6pm Sunday July 22. See above post.

PLEASE NOTE: There are two structures and two locations

Grossetete and his team, together with hundreds of volunteers, will help transform cardboard boxes into not just one, but two structures.

1. One structure is a new cardboard bridge at Waterside (beside the Commercial Boat Club), which will be floated out on boats, serving as a testimony to Galway’s River Corrib Viaduct, once part of the famous Galway to Clifden Railway.

Directions to Waterside: Go to Town Hall Theatre and continue on towards the water, turning right when you reach the water. Pass the Rowing Club, then take next left and continue walking with water on your left. Turn right, then next right, and you’ve arrived at the Commercial Boat Club.

2. The second structure will replicate St. Nicholas' Church in Galway and will be erected on Eyre Square.

This awe–inspiring and spectacular architectural event is created by the people, for the people, and demonstrates the very best of community spirit and collective endeavour. All are welcome to take part. The event is suitable for children and adults alike.

Read about The People Build at GIAF 2017.

All hands on deck for the workshops, construction or demolition!

Members of the public are invited to take part in workshops to transform cardboard boxes into building materials. Under the supervision of Oliver Grossetete's team, you will work to ensure each piece of the structure is ready for its debut. We are also looking for volunteers to take part in the construction and demolition of The People Build. The dates are 20 & 21 July for the two constructions and 22 July for both demolitions.

APPLY HERE to take part in the workshops, construction or demolition.