The KinShip Project is an ambitious public artwork based in a former landfill site south of Cork City. The aim of this year-long project is to develop a kin-like connection between Tramore Valley Park and its surrounding community, encouraging people to treat the park as an extension of their own family.
The KinShip Project is led by artists LennonTaylor (Marilyn Lennon and Seán Taylor), in partnership with Cork City Council. It is a recipient of the inaugural Creative Climate Action fund, an initiative from the Creative Ireland Programme in collaboration with the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media and the Department of Environment, Climate and Communication. This initiative supports creative, cultural and artistic projects that build awareness around climate change and empowers citizens to make meaningful behavioural transformations. Local project partners include Cork Healthy Cities, Cork Nature Network, Cork UNESCO Learning Cities, Green Spaces for Health, MTU Clean Technology Centre and UCC Environmental Research Institute.
Tramore Valley Park spans 170 acres off the city’s South Link Road and has a history of great environmental change. From the 1960’s until 2009, the site was used as a landfill with over 3 million tonnes of waste from Cork homes and businesses deposited on site. Plans were made to repurpose the land, and ten years after the landfill’s closure, the site was transformed into a public park for the people of Cork city and became a habitat for a whole host of living things with whom this project aims to establish ‘a kinship’.
According to LennonTaylor:
“The Park is an archaeology of our past, our friends’ pasts, and all of us that lived and grew in the city in those years. We are part of that park, we are responsible, we own some of the history of that landscape. The KinShip Project represents a challenge of the imagination in this era of climate change, and for all of us.”
LennonTaylor invite the public to participate in The Midden Chronicles’, a year-long deep mapping of the park. Together they suggest that everyday activities like growing, foraging, composting, rewilding, walking, beekeeping, planting, sensing are forms of contemporary storytelling. Working with collaborators they will record, broadcast, perform, write, visualise, create and share impressions with the park, its wider community of life and the citizens of Cork city.
Three other elements of The KinShip Project programme include:
- BECOMING KIN: THE KINSHIP CITIZEN LED PROGRAMME
‘Becoming Kin’ invites engagement with communities whose voice and influence is crucial in addressing climate action. The KinShip project is now welcoming expressions of interest from any Cork city based person, group, organisation, or group of friends who have knowledge, know-how, or skills to share with the public. Participants may wish to contribute by delivering talks and workshops or by guiding walks and other park based activities.
These activities will take place on the last Sunday of every month. For the first event, Cork Nature Network will run a FREE Winter Nature Walk in the park on February 27th, 2pm-4pm, suitable for all ages.
- THE KINSHIP ARTIST PLACEMENT PROGRAMME
Professional artists or creatives can apply to participate in an Artist Placement on The KinShip Project. These paid Artist Placements are particularly aimed at opening up new perspectives, ways of inhabiting the park, and generating wider public conversation on climate action, ecology, waste, urban land use, and kinship with the wider community of life.
- THE KINSHIP ECOLAB COMPETITION
The KinShip EcoLab Competition is an open call to design and build an experimental and innovative temporary structure of architectural importance in Tramore Valley Park. The competition challenges architects, artists, designers, eco-builders, and craftspeople to create a temporary architectural/sculptural structure for public meetings and workshops. Proposals should focus on eco-friendly and cost-effective building techniques to set an example of green building practice in Ireland and beyond. The competition will be launched in March 2022 and will be announced on The KinShip Project website and social media channels.
Minister Catherine Martin said
“In times of challenge, we have found ourselves turning to the arts as a means to process our shared experience, as a platform for collective expression and as a tool for community building. Climate Change represents one of the greatest challenges facing us today. The concept of kin underpinning The KinShip Project offers an opportunity to become the change we wish to see in our world, with real vision.”
Minister Eamon Ryan added
“Our investment in The KinShip Project, through the Creative Climate Action fund, represents a commitment by our departments to support community climate action that is inclusive and imaginative. The principles of community engagement, participation and creativity that inform this initiative are key to our drive to support and activate communities to take local climate and environmental action. This project is a great example of what can be done and will hopefully inspire other communities to be creative in their climate action too.”
The Lord Mayor of Cork Cllr. Colm Kelleher
“Cork City Council welcomes the award of Creative Climate Action Funding from Creative Ireland for The KinShip Project. The Council embraces this opportunity to bring creative vision to climate issues and to engage the public in the unique environment at Tramore Valley Park.”