projects and residencies 1

projects and residencies

In the last 20 years Judy Kravis and Peter Morgan have planted 10,000 deciduous trees on a hill above the River Lee, transforming agricultural land into meadow and woods, restoring habitats through sympathetic attention and cultivation, watching the return of wildlife. They keep hens, grow vegetables and fruit, look after a large pond, make art and books and tend a wildish garden.

The development of the land happened slowly, without plan, like the garden. The longer you stay in a place the more you learn how to inhabit it. What you do is the product of what you notice as you walk about, what you see through the window. One woodland was planted in 1998, another in 2014. The older woodland, mainly oak, birch and cherry, has been thinned several times. There is a good layer of leaf mould, a scurry of red squirrels and usually a crop of wood blewits (edible fungi). The new woodland is all native species—oak, birch, rowan, hawthorn, spindle, hazel, aspen, cherry and holly. Gradually the field has reverted to something like what a field on a hill in County Cork would have been before agriculture: dense with mixed wild grasses and rich in plantains, sorrel and yellow rattle; last year an early purple orchid appeared, though there are none for miles around.

In the summer of 2016 they initiated a move to make their land into a quasi-public space, inviting people to come and wander. Open-ended wandering is a tonic in itself. What you might see. Where your gaze might rest among the fine detail of a place. How your sense of being alive can shift. People exclaimed at how fast the trees had grown, as if in the popular imagination a forest were always future. Others said they had not walked in a field like this since they were children.
“There’s so much everywhere.”
“ So many contemplative spaces, both indoors and out.”
“Sitting up at the pond, you can feel it all slip away.”
“The way the garden and the field and woods are one.”

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On September 21st 2016, in collaboration with GLUT/COMIDA they hosted a popup Equinox Dinner in one of the outbuildings, using largely their own produce, including a cauliflower fungus serendipitously found at the bottom of a pine tree that day. Students from Colaiste Choilm in Ballincollig have been working on a Young Scientist project on water run-off and soil fertility, taking samples from the field and the woods.


The move towards opening up and sharing the resource they have created has led to a plan to have artist/writer residencies. Simple accommodation for one or possibly two, will be provided; transport to shops once or twice a week. Integral to the idea of the residency is a day a week working on the land.

Come for a wander, summer 2016
Equinox Dinner, pop-up restaurant created by Glutglut (Ciarán Meade and Wayne Dunlea), September 2016.
Young Scientists Projects (Colaiste Choilm, Ballincollig), on soil fertility and water run-off, December 2016.
Palaeoecology students from Department of Archaeology, UCC, with Ben Gearey, March 2017.
Second Year sculpture students from Limerick School of Art and Design, with Róisín Lewis, April 2017.
MA students from Crawford School of Art and Design, with Lucy Dawe-Lane, April 2017.

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CIT Crawford College of Art & Design – Lucy Dawe-Lane.
Kinsale College sustainable-horticulture-permaculture— Donal Chambers
UCC Department of Archaeology – Ben Gearey
LIT Limerick School of Art and Design - Róisín Lewis
glutglut - Ciarán Meade & Wayne Dunlea

Judy Kravis is an experimental writer, favouring diary, poetry, interview and eavesdropping; she taught french literature for many years. Peter Morgan taught and works with photography, text, moving images and 3-D objects. His approach is often humorous and conceptual. They work in collaboration and individually on a range of book projects.

Judy Kravis and Peter Morgan This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
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