Forests

Earth Writings Exhibition


Library, Maynooth University
November 20 2019

Cathy Fitzgerald, PhD by Creative Practice

ecosocial artist | researcher | educator

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The Hollywood Forest Story:

Slideshow Installation

All material for Dr. Cathy Fitzgerald’s installation for the inaugural EarthWritings.ie exhibition was collated from her ongoing, since 2008 hollywoodforest.com blog.

A video of slides from The Hollywood Forest Story (ongoing since 2008) were displayed with the audio-visual ebook The Hollywood Forest Story: Living Well with Forests to explain Eco-Social Art Practice . (Two print versions of the eBooks are now available in the Maynooth library).

The audio-visual ebook The Hollywood Forest Story: Living Well with Forests to explain Eco-Social Art Practice is available online on Apple books (this is a large file and will take 10 mins to download).
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About ‘The Hollywood Forest Story’: Living Well with Forests

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The Hollywood Forest Story is the online story (www.hollywoodforest.com) of the transformation of a small 2-acre conifer plantation in South County Carlow.

Previously destined to be clear-felled, Hollywood forest – ‘the little wood that could’, is slowly becoming a mixed species, permanent forest.

This work follows the artist’s exploration of new-to-Ireland continuous cover forestry as the focus in her ‘eco-social art practice’. The artist’s expanded creative practice explores this new forestry as a critical ecological direction for Irish forestry through forestry, collaborations, art activity, blogging, activism, and ecoliteracy.

The artist has helped bring this new forestry approach to the Irish Green Party forest policy in 2012 and advanced Green Party knowledge of the developing international law against the crime of ecocide in 2013 and in 2020. She is a long-standing committee member of Pro Silva Ireland, that now advises the Irish Government on permanent, continuous cover forestry.

Recent News | Blog Posts about Cathy Fitzgerald’s work
  • Cathy Fitzgerald speaks with Megan Best Dublin City FM on Why Ecoliteracy Matters for the Creative Sector November 15, 2020 - Megan Best, Green Room, Dublin City FM interviews Cathy Fitzgerald, founder of the Haumea Ecoliteracy online courses for the creative sector. Cathy spoke about the importance of ecoliteracy for arts practitioners and creative professionals. She also discussed her work in advocating for continuous cover forestry, ecocide law, and the Earth Charter.
  • ECOSOCIAL ARTIST RESEARCHER CATHY FITZGERALD’S ‘HOLLYWOOD FOREST STORY – AN ECO-SOCIAL ART PRACTICE FOR THE SYMBIOCENE’ FOR THE US MINDING NATURE JOURNAL November 7, 2019 - Cathy Fitzgerald was asked to write an article about her eco-social art practice, The Hollywood Forest Story and others eco-social art practices for the US Minding Nature journal in 2019. MINDING NATURE is a journal exploring conservation values and the practice of ecological democratic citizenship.
  • PEATLANDS: A REVOLUTION IN HOW WE LIVE October 22, 2019 - An interdisciplinary Workshop on Creative Approaches to Education for Environmental Understanding and Responsibility. Organised by Dr. Maureen O'Connor and The Glucksman, UCC, supported by an Irish Research Council Creative Connection Scheme.
  • AN URGENT CONVERSATION FOR THE ARTS IN IRELAND May 29, 2019 - Dr. Cathy Fitzgerald's invitation to talk in Galway came after being invited by Dr. Nessa Cronin, Prof Karen Till, and Prof Gerry Kearns to share her research last year at the 50th Conference of Irish Geographers in Maynooth University in May 2018. For her presentation in Galway, in the West of Ireland, Nessa invited her to present an overview of her study on the absence of arts policy for the eco-social emergencies in Ireland by first presenting how these concerns arose from her long-term eco-social art practice The Hollywood Forest Story (begun in 2008). [A video and podcast version of her seminar are included].
  • GOOD-BYE ANTHROPOCENE – HELLO SYMBIOCENE! May 27, 2019 - The first Irish signatory to #CultureDeclaresEmergency and eco-social artist, researcher and educator, Dr Cathy Fitzgerald, discusses the new era, the Symbiocene coined by Glenn Albrecht. The Symbiocene is the new epoch in human history, beyond the ecocide of the Anthropocene, in which emergent humanity celebrates and respects all life's diversity and develops new Earth-aligned intellectual and emotional features. Cathy's talk identifies that the Symbiocene can help cultural workers and others frame their work, especially ecological art practices situated in communities that help people envision new ideas, practices and values for a better, more just and beautiful world.

Artist Biography

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Cathy Fitzgerald, PhD by Creative Practice, originally from New Zealand, is an ecosocial artist, researcher and educator living in Ireland.

She completed her practice-based PhD, The Ecological Turn: Living Well with Forests to articulate ecosocial art practice using Guattari’s ecosophy and action research, in 2018, at the National College of Art and Design (an audiovisual ebook of her PhD can be viewed here).

She continues her ongoing practice Hollywood Forest Story bringing ecological forestry practice and ideas of ecosocial art practice to others. In recent years she has brought her ecosocial art framework to assist those working on cultural responses to wetlands and she is part of the Creative Ireland Carlow The Drummin Bog Project.

Having a previous career in research science, Cathy is keenly aware of international cultural policy that confirms that culture has immense social power to translate and localise environmental science so as to engage communities in diverse urban and rural regions about sustainability, in ways that are unavailable to science.

As a consequence, Cathy has in recent years advocated that the Irish culture sector respond urgently to the ecological emergency with new policy, strategy and supports.

Cathy is a signatory of the Earth Charter, the international Stop Ecocide campaign and the first Irish-based signatory of the international #CultureDeclares Emergency campaign.

Cathy shares knowledge of ecoliteracy for creative workers through workshops, mentoring and her popular and unique Haumea online Essential Ecoliteracy for Creatives and Art Professional courses at haumea.ie

Cathy Fitzgerald has developed a comprehensive curriculum on ecoliteracy for creatives and art professionals, attracting interest from people working in the creative sector and cultural policy in Ireland and overseas. See http://www.haumea.ie