Around The Table is connecting with communities old and new across Dublin’s historic Central Area. Working with The National Library of Ireland, artists, communities and groups are collaborating to make their mark by weaving their own stories into this valuable living resource by drawing on and enriching its Collection.
Through consultations with the community of the Central area, themes of mothering, belonging, words and work emerged. These themes are being explored and connected through mapping the story, role and journey of food in the City from the Docks to the markets, and from the streets to the table.
Artist and Luncheonette owner, Jennie Moran. Documenter and Photographer, Jeanette Lowe and Social Historian Donal Fallon are working together with diverse groups of people in the City, gathering stories and drawing on the rich historical and contemporary context of the vibrant, complex and diverse communities that populate the Central area.
As we explore the central place of food in our lives, connecting to memory, culture, place and to each other we are being drawn more deeply into the warmth and importance of family and community in its many forms. We are also encountering the loyalty and solidarity of workers who’s hard physical labour put food on our tables and coal in our grates.
We are edging ever closer towards Dublin’s industrial history as we meet the ex-Dockworkers, the Market traders and the factory workers whose stories are embedded into the buildings, the fabric and the air of the city.
Around the Table brings together a wealth of individuals and communities to create this project.
The Snug Women’s Group
Dockworker Workers Preservation Society
Smithfield & Stoneybatter People’s History Project
Just Ask Homework Club
Hill Street Family Resource Centre
East Wall History Project
Jennie Moran Jennie Moran is a visual artist who tries to make places remember people after they’re gone; providing opportunities for loitering; causing delays; letting the dust of invisible histories accumulate, using the infrastructure of hospitality (light, heat, food).
She has gathered knowledge through a Degree in Sculpture from the National College of Art & Design; international residencies at NES Iceland, Fondazione Ratti, Italy and Galleria Blanda, Buenos Aires. Her projects have been facilitated by Dublin City Council Art Bursary, Arts Council Project Award, Artist in the Community Award, Engaging with Architecture Award and a Visual Art Bursary.
Jeanette Lowe Jeanette Lowe is a contemporary photographic artist who was born and lives in Dublin, Ireland. Her work has been exhibited in Ireland and internationally.
Jeanette is probably best known for her vibrant photographic studies of the people and environment of Dublin’s inner-city, notably her environmental portraiture from Pearse House flats and also her studies of the Charlemont Street Flats, prior to and during demolition. A unique feature of her work has been to stage the exhibition of these projects within the flats themselves, bringing art to the heart of these communities while also providing a reason for people from other communities to visit.
She studied photography and visual arts practice at the National College of Art & Design and holds an MA in Creative Digital Media from Dublin Institute of Technology. In 2015 she was shortlisted for the Alliance Française Photo Award 2015, had work selected for the RHA Annual Exhibition; The ‘Home’ Exhibition at the DLR Lexicon Gallery in Dún Laoghaire; and was named as the Curator’s Choice for Photography at Éigse in Carlow.
Donal Fallon Donal Fallon is a historian and writer based in Dublin. He has been published in History Ireland, Jacobin, the Irish Independent, Totally Dublin and other diverse outlets. From 2014 to September 2016, he was the resident historian on Newstalk Breakfast. He has worked with Dublin City Council on the ‘My Area in 1916’ project, the Little Museum of Dublin and published a number of books, including a study of Nelson’s Pillar.
Donal Fallon has a particular interest in the social history of the city. He is one of the trio of writers behind the Dublin history website Come Here To Me!, and a tour guide of the City. He teaches the course ‘Hidden Dublin: From the Monto to Little Jerusalem’ with the Adult Education Department of University College Dublin.
Project Advisory Group
Bernadette Larkin, Project Manager, Around the Table
Iseult Byrne, Project Director, Dublin’s Culture Connects
Bernadette Cogan, Divisional Librarian, Central Library
Bríd O’Sullivan, Learning & Outreach, National Library of Ireland
Liz Coman, Assistant Arts Officer, Dublin City Council
Ruairí Ó Cuiv, Assistant Arts Officer, Dublin City Council
Eileen Gleeson, Assistant Area Manager, Central Area, Dublin City Council
Aisling Browne, Project Estate Officer, Central Area, Dublin City Council
Dublin City Libraries’ mission is to maximise opportunity for all – individuals and communities – through guided access to ideas, learning, literature, information and heritage resources supported by cultural programming.
The mission of The National Library is to collect, preserve, promote and make accessible the documentary and intellectual record of the life of Ireland and contribute to the provision of access to the larger universe of recorded knowledge. The National Library’s holdings constitute the most comprehensive collection of Irish documentary material in the world and offer an invaluable representation of Ireland’s history and heritage. Material acquired through Legal Deposit, donations and purchases is subsequently processed for storage and access. Providing appropriate storage and care for all collections is a vital part of our work and ensures its preservation for future generations.
The City Arts Office assists artists and communities to enhance their contributions to and experiences within the arts. The City Arts Office is part of Dublin City Council’s Culture Recreation Amenity and Community Department. The City Arts Office works in partnership with other Dublin City Council sections, and in particular with those concerned with arts and cultural programming and provision. It holds a specialised remit to practice the arts, participate in the arts, develop audiences for the arts, and work with other City Sections to maximise opportunity for the public to engage in the arts, and particularly to improve access to the arts.
The Central Area is one of 5 administrative areas used by Dublin City Council to co-ordinate the delivery of services in the city. This includes Broadstone, North Wall, East Wall, Drumcondra, Ballybough and the north city centre.
The Central area is one of the most diverse in the city with 182 nationalities and 185 languages spoken. People in this area are more likely to walk to work, to school and to the shops maybe that’s how, despite the crowds, people get to know each other as they carve out their own paths as they go about their lives. Although it is the centre of the city, where others visit to work and shop to the residents, everything is local.
There is no need to travel, everything is on your own doorstep from the big stores to the small corner shops and the stalls on Moore Street where you can still buy your fruit and veg straight from the markets. It’s the place where you can buy the once strange and exotic ingredients alongside your batch loaf, where the old greasy spoon and the Aul Lads’ pub sits comfortably beside the Hipster Burger Joint and the Craft Beer Pub. Walking the streets here it is impossible to miss the iconic symbols of the past are embedded amongst the sights and sounds of a modern city.