The book “Townlands: a habitation” is ready to go to print!!
This 144pp full-colour publication, a celebration of The Townlands Project has been produced and edited by myself, visual artist Alan Counihan. The book features specially commissioned essays by travel writer Dervla Murphy and historical geographer Patrick J. Duffy, along with poems and prose pieces about their local landscapes by poets Kerry Hardie and Carmel Cummins. The book also contains two essays and two image portfolios by Alan Counihan and two by visual artist Gypsy Ray. The Foreword is by Catherine Marshall.
The subtitle of the book is: A Creative Exploration of a Rural Landscape. It is an exploration of how we, as individuals and communities, find identity in landscape and place. Within its pages we explore, through word and image, a particular Irish landscape as a living historical record. In the process we examine how it has shaped our relationships to our place in the world. We discover that landscape is not just what we see in terms of geology, fauna or flora but that our view of it is a construct born of inherited cultural experiences.
Ongoing since 2009, The Townlands Project has involved the gathering of place and field names in the nine townlands of the old Civil Parish of Rathcoole in north Kilkenny, along with an associated series of oral history recordings, Conversations around the Home Place. Engagement with the community has been wide-ranging and has resulted in two art and heritage exhibitions, a collaboration between Barnstorm Theatre Company and the local national school, a seminar entitled The Landscapes of Home, and a short film, Field Song, all based on the local landscape and its history. An exhibition of art works created in response to this local landscape continues to develop and to tour nationally.
Within the pages of the forthcoming book , Townlands:a habitation, all the Project’s various strands have been brought together so that they can be experienced as part of an overall process. Each strand has shared the same collaborative ingredients of local engagement and creative activism, of exploration and discovery, of shared respect, trust and generosity.
This publication is partly supported by the Heritage Office of Kilkenny County Council (€3000.00). The other major funding support, on the promise of which we had developed the publication, is no longer available to us. We have had to provide the balance of the funding toward design and print costs (total €7500.00) from borrowed resources and the generosity of friends and supporters. The Townlands Project and its goal of community celebration and enrichment is a non-commissioned expression of public art. If we reach our goal a percentage of all book sales will go to support the work of Johnswell Development Committee.
WE HOPE FOR YOUR SUPPORT!
To view sample pages from this publication or to learn more about the Townlands Project visit : www.townlands.net.
For ongoing news on our campaign visit :
Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Alan Counihan ( Project Initiator).