Grizedale Arts

A Fair Land

01/02/2016 until 01/09/2016

Initiated as a residency reform programme for the Irish Museum of Modern Art the project aimed to create an artist led functional system for living - a model village. Starting with a crop - in this case a fast and easy one being courgettes and from that crop extrapolating the requirements for servicing and processing, to create a product and an economy. The final element being housing, designed to service the system - this sadly did not happen due to budget constraints (although more significantly management and Health and Safety madness). The ambition of the whole project was to create something from nothing, absolute bare minimum in terms of materials, just raw elements, no decoration, no embellishment, no unnecessary elements.

The project was set in motion with an open call for volunteers as per Grizedale policy – and from those volunteers a group was developed who then developed and delivered the core project. The group became known as the Fairland collective being Niamh Riordan, Francesca Ulivi, Brenda Kerney, Emily Cropton, Motoko Fujita. A further series of groups supported different elements from the day to day delivery, interpretation and publication elements.

The development of the structures and practical components were commissioned from Public Works, Somewhere and Tom and Tannad Williams who created the Straw barn (for processing), the glut field (growing) and the village hall (delivery) as a dinning room and production base.

A further series of one off commissions embellished the programme adding a sparkle of art celebrity that the Museum system recognises. These were artists that had connections with Grizedale and worked on similar concerns, the idea of art as a social force, an action rather than an artefact. These artists were Marcus Coates, Sarah Staton, Suzanne Lacy, Renzo Martens, Jonathan Meese, Suzanne Lacy and Tania Bruguera.