On Saturday last we were absolutely delighted as over 200 people came out to celebrate and support Drummin Bog at VISUAL, Carlow. The response to the artworks, the information desk and the event overall was absolutely wonderful, with people coming from Carlow town and county but also further afield from Dublin, Kildare, Laois and Wexford.
Our keynote speaker Dr. Liam Lysaght (Director, National BioDiversity Data Centre) commented on the tremendous goodwill already evident towards the bog in the generosity of the participating artists. This was also reflected in the amount of people present, their interest in the event, and sales made. He noted how the bog is a special place, and how important it is for us to maintain these legacy landscapes, not only for their historical layers and previous cultural connotations but also for what they hold into the future, and for future generations. He is of the opinion that farming practices need to change in order to create a more ecologically sensitive viability alongside our conservation strategies and responsibilities. As he finished, he was delighted to be presented with a framed watercolour of bog rosemary andromeda polifolia by the Dublin-based botanical artist Guilia Canevari. She had made this work from a photo taken on the bog last summer and he had coincidentally alluded to bog rosemary in his speech as small, precious and an important botanical find on Drummin Bog. And a perfect reason to conserve the bog into the future. One parent commented that her daughter had, after hearing Liam’s talk, bought an artwork to support the project, out of her pocket money – her first art purchase. But also a metaphor for the generations to come who will be managing the legacies we put in place now.
Many scientists and artists present commented on how interesting the project and the event was, and how usual perspectives were shifted a little, with common ground created between audiences from different fields and places. So while “Hidden:REVEAL” was a fund-raiser for Drummin Bog, simultaneously the extra layers of art, science and community contributed enormously to the richness of the evening.
Finally, there was a round of applause in memory and honour of Gunnar Bernstorff. Living near New Ross, he had the awareness that Drummin Bog was both beautiful and crucial to conserve. Back in the eighties, he did a land swop for the bog and it is through his prescience and sensitivity that Drummin Bog is here for us today. His wife Ann and daughter Alexis were present last night. They are both active in the preservation of the Bog – its future as an amenity and as a great resource for education in early farming, ecology and botany.
Overall, this art and ecology event became a model for collaboration and community. We wish to thank all the participating artists for their very generous contributions, all the people who came and viewed and purchased work, and Ann Mulrooney and the team at VISUAL who were so helpful to us. Huge thanks also to Dr. Liam Lysaght, The National Parks and Wildlife Service, Albert Fogarty, The Chocolate Garden, The Truffle Fairy, Digital Outputs Ltd and The Waters and Communities Office.
After the event, there was a draw for the participating artists for a voucher to Lennons@Visual Restaurant. We are delighted to announce that the voucher will be going to the artist Maeve Coulter.
Photos from the event can be viewed below. Please click an image to view all as a slideshow.
View all the submitted works here (all the names of the artist’s who contributed works are now ‘revealed’ under each image).
Could’t Attend the Event in VISUAL? You can also donate to the Drummin Bog Project via PayPal or your credit or debit card.
Our deep appreciation to all the participating artists
and we do hope you can join us at VISUAL Carlow to celebrate the unique natural heritage of Carlow’s only raised bog.