Imagining Silvermines: A Psychogeography

Artist Name(s) Fiona Woods
Artwork title Imagining Silvermines: A Psychogeography
Context/Background Imagining Silvermines: A Psychogeography was a project by Fiona Woods, the result of a six month part-time visual artist residency programme created by North Tipperary County Council in 2007. The aim of the residency is to provide opportunities for a local, national or international artist to research and develop their work practice in response to time spent within the North Tipperary region over a six month period.
Description

Due to the distinctive rural context of North Tipperary, the Arts Office expressed a particular interest in artists developing work and exploring arts in rural contexts, arts in the context of regeneration, arts and ecology/arts and the environment and land art. The artists comments:

"In response to the original brief, this visual artist residency was very much directed towards art in the public realm. For an outsider like myself, that meant looking very closely and carefully at the context of North Tipperary in an attempt to discover where exactly the public realm was to be found. In some ways the public realm is both more and less obvious in a rural context; far more of it is open to view, but equally far less of it is public space of the kind one encounters in an urban setting.

Silvermines attracted me for many reasons, but perhaps it was the intriguing mix of public and private spaces that kept me coming back. The abandoned mine works that lie all around the area are both public and privately owned areas; they speak of the privatisation of resources that lie out of our sight, and the consequences of that."

The project was the artist's response to "a perceived complexity, a collision of history, ecology, myth and memory." The Space Shuttle, a multifunctional creative box, sent temporarily into orbit to outside locations, to be used by interdisciplinary artist groups and community organisations and initiatives, arrived in Silvermines on 4 July and took on the identity of the Imaginary Museum.

This was a project in which the local community was the central element and the collection in the 'museum' consists exclusively of what they bring. A steady stream of local people from the very young to very old passed through, and all of them questioned the artist carefully about the project and responded with great humour and openness.

A final public event took place on the weekend of the 18-19 August, 2007.

Mediation

During 2008 and 2009 the artist continued working on an off-shoot/lead-on project that consisted of developing a walking trail guided by artistic signposts, initiated during the residency. These are currently being researched and finalised between the artist and the local community.

Biographies

See the artist's website

Commissioner Name North Tipperary County Council
Commissioning process Open competition
Project commission dates February 1, 2007 - July 31, 2007
Partners Arts Council
Artform Visual Arts
Art Practice Arts Participation
Funded By The Arts Council,North Tipperary County Council
Budget Range 10000 - 30000 euro
Project commission start date 01/02/2007
Project commission end date 31/07/2007
Location Silvermines village, Tipperary
County Tipper
Town Silvermines
Street Address The village square
Google Map Insert View this projects location
Website www.shiftingground.net/tippevents.htm
Content contributor(s) Melanie Scott
Relationship to project Commissioner
Public engagement

In this project the the local community are the central element, and as such there was a good response from people of all ages. 

Opportunities

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Pathway

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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