Current Projects


​Fiona Woods |One Kind And Another | Book Launch & Panel Discussion

Ennistymon Courthouse Gallery and The Artists’ Resource Room are pleased to present the launch of
One Kind And Another by Fiona Woods.

Fiona Woods |One Kind And Another | Book Launch & Panel Discussion | Ennistymon Courthouse Gallery, Co. Clare | February 6th 2pm
Fiona Woods’ new publication One Kind and Another is the outcome of her episodic collaborative practice collection of minds. This practice asserts the artist’s embededdness within and reliance upon social, geographical, and conceptual networks.
This new publication documents a number of collection of minds episodes which took place over a period of 18 months (2014-2015). The episodes outline contrasting worlds from the High Plains of Colorado to the tracking of goat herds in the Burren. They produce a myriad of dialogues with others, including artists with a strong rural focus, gun club members and goat farmers. The publication captures a multitude of engagements with the material world, both sensuous and intellectual.
Woods will be joined by members of the Ground Up Artists Collective who participated in some of these episodes, for a discussion about collaboration as process of discovery, as innovation, as risk.

Please join us on Saturday the 6th of February.
We’ll start the afternoon at 2pm with tea and coffee.
At 2.30pm discussions will begin, concluding by 4pm. 

Fiona Woods is a visual artist whose practice crosses critical inquiry, artistic intervention and international research collaborations. She uses public space, social situations and the institutional site of art as circuits for the production and distribution of works that explore ideas of public interest or what we have ‘in common’. She regularly operates in a co-productive capacity with others under the heading collection of minds. Woods is a recipient of the 2015 Fiosraigh Scholarship for a PhD candidate at the Centre for Transcultural Research and Media Practice, DIT, and she lectures at Limerick School of Art & Design.

Ennistymon Courthouse Gallery is Co.Clare’s leading public art gallery. The Artists’ Resource Room is a volunteer-led initiative intended to generate discourse on the Visual Arts. The work for One Kind and Another was made possible through generous support from The Arts Council of Ireland. The National Endowment for the Arts (US) and Clare County Council. It was designed by Pure Designs.!17/c1wsj!episodes/cay5


Poster GUAC Red Couch

Dwelling In Time

Creative Solidarity

A presentation of research from a recent residency on Inis Oírr,

The Red Couch Space, Courthouse Gallery, Enistymon, Co. Clare,

August 14th – September 3rd.

The title for the residency theme, Dwelling In Time, arose from the collective’s consideration of the essay Creative Intelligence by Fiona Woods that had been commissioned by Ground Up Artists. Through a series of meetings in 2014, this text served as a blueprint to explore the theme of “dwelling” and what it spoke to in terms of a collective practice which connected with the individual interests of the artists involved. The word “dwelling” can suggest place, habitation, or home. As a verb it is more active, in calling up ideas about living, a sense of conscious decision, or staying with whatever is in focus. It also suggests time, reflection and waiting with slow patience. The latter option is one that does not come so easily at this time of ever increasing acceleration, speed and instant gratification, with its intolerance of slow returns.

Entering the second decade of the collective’s existence there is an acceptance of natural rhythms and the knowledge of the true time of reproduction. With that in mind GUAC made the conscious decision to uphold a slow, durational processes, this has been the experience of many of the Ground Up Artist’s practice. During the residency at Aras Éanna art centre on Inis Oirr, the collective’s presence on the island was strengthened through Ground Up Artist’s involvement with various groups and individuals. Meeting the layers and significance of language from the social, historical, political and economic perspectives of this Gaeltacht rural area was supported by an interest in building relationships and connections with the local people and community groups. Dwelling in Time has allowed both artists and the island community a chance to open up spaces for reflection, conversation, serious and playful considerations of issues which affect all, on and off the island.

Artists participated in and supported some island community groups while entering into the vernacular of the island through speaking Irish and meeting some of the realities of island life which could be considered in the light of contemporary environments, on the larger island, or “mainland” of Ireland. The considerations of time, and the opportunity of a durational experience offered the participating artists the possibility of encounter. The collective was joined by groups with specific interests from outside of the island, MA candidates from Social Practice and Creative Environment programme in Limerick’s LSAD, collaborative team Kanelli & Smit from Freysland, and their project, EBB & FLO, was ongoing over ten days.

The Ground Up Artists wish to continue to develop a collective practice into the future. Possibilities for visits to Freysland and further invitations to engage in critical solidarities with communities, who are open to sustained engagement with their rural and agri-cultural concerns, bringing into visibility works which are part of a continuing development of a new rural aesthetic and practices which reflect the radical changes that are as much part of the rural as they are of the urban1.

1 For further reading see Ian Hunter’s Essay: Rethinking The Rural: The Wilder Shores of Contemporary Art. A decade of Country Hits. Jaap Sam Books. 2014



Through 2014 the collective theme of dwelling, which was articulated in the essay ‘Collective Intelligence’ by Fiona Woods, (see website category about us), supported a series of Ground Up meetings and mini residencies.

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The recent residency in Inis Oírr April/May 2015, continued the theme with the addition of time. Under the umbrella of Dwelling in Time the theme brought forward the following ingredients to our collective practices: Fermenting-Experiment-Kneading-Bread-Eating-Sharing-Time-Research-Participation-Hosting-Collaborations-Connection-Duration-Visitors-Audience-Encounter-Interviews-Exhibition-Events-Outreach-Meetings-Documentation-Looking forward.

Dwelling In Time, 2015 - A reflection from an island.

The word “dwelling” can suggest place, habitation, or home. As a verb its more active, in calling up ideas about living, a sense of conscious decision, or  staying with whatever is in focus. It also suggests time, reflection and waiting with slow patience.

Ideas of fermentation or substance forming through the passing of time and their exposure to the environment together with manipulation, brings to mind a process the Ground Up collective has engaged in. The variety of experience collaborations and events are described below.

Michel Serres describes the process of creativity as an enfolding of ingredients like folding air into dough.

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“The action of kneading makes the material alive because it invest’s it with energy. One seems literally to put work into the substance one kneads, inducing kinetic potential into the previously dead substance. When one kneads dough or clay, it is as if one were winding a spring. Time has been folded into it along with work and air, and so, having undergone a transition from an in-itself to a for-itself, it has a future”

Steven Connor, ‘Topologies: Michel Serres and the Shapes of Thought’

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Dwelling in Time Artists who participated in the exhibition in Aras Eanna during the month of May were: Monica de Bath, Marie Connole, Trudi van der Elsen, Maeve Collins, Marianne Slevin, Pauline Beatrice Goggin, Kaneli & Smit.

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One definition by Wikipedia for collaboration is working with others to do a task and to achieve shared goals and another is a deep, collective determination to reach an identical objective. Usually, recipients of residencies are for individual artists. Aras Eanna in awarding the residency to the collective, created a challenge both to themselves and to us.

Ground Up Artists Collective continues to extend a hand of friendship and critical solidarity to other collectives, collaborative artists and to each other, finding commonality and inspiration from the initiatives taken by the members as well as providing challenge and a sounding board through the form of think tank  meetings.

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As part of the collective residency we invited the collaborative artists Kaneli & Smit, from Friesland, The Netherlands.

The presentations of Kaneli & Smit, whose project, Ebb & Flow, described a durational painting practice that depended on close observation and knowledges of the ebb and flow of tidal patterns which linked their work to the global tidal patterns in the world. The sense of collaboration between themselves and the ocean is profound in its commitment to a daily practice and connection with ecology and nature. Following a presentation of their work, they have been offered a longer residency from Aras Éanna, at a future date. Their presence also further developed and supported plans to bring the Groundup Artists to Freysland in 2016 for the Leeuwarden Capital of Culture. GUAC have been invited to participate in a residency in The Dairy Factory(TDF), in the Netherlands in 2016.

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Also invited were the Third Space , Galway interdisciplinary Arts Research Collective.

A  public reading event as part of the residency included the following texts:

Fiona Woods: Collective Intelligence, an Essay see

Rebecca Solnit: Revolution of the Snails; Encounters with the Zapatistas

Hito Steyrl: Freefall: A Thought Experiment on Vertical Perspective

Franco ‘Bifo’ Berardi: After The Future

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Other invited groups included a DreamSharing Group from Limerick on a sleepover to collect dreams from the collected unconscious of the island. this event was also added to by a dream from the Dutch artists, which suggested a connection with the four ports or portals of the island.

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Another collaboration that has emerged is with artist Fiona Wood on her project, ‘reverse mapping’ to be launched at the end of the summer.

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Collective member, Maeve Collins, engaged with the island community through weekly workshops with Comhrá na Naoiseacht older women’s group, in preparation for a collaborative performance of an adaptation of The Midnight Court, which was held during the May bank holiday weekend. Mask making workshops with Fetac groups in Ennistymon were part of this process.

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MA candidates from Social Practice and Creative Environment programme in Limerick’s LSAD, were also recruited into the process and their participation brought another strand of inter-county connection to the related events.


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Could it be that dwelling implies an act of collectivity, of staying – staying together-caring for one another- facing together the unpredictable that is always coming towards us? Perhaps this is a time of developing new models and new understandings of what it may mean to be successful as an artist; what might constitute achievement through an art practice?; how might a sense of one’s value as an artist be measured outside of the monetary, when funding is scarce and the competition for smaller and smaller amounts is to be distributed among an increasing population of artists and creatives.

The options for inclusion of more social and cultural pedagogy may be considerations for us all as Ground Up moves forward.

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Video of 'Feasting On The Wind' exhibition

Video of the ‘Feasting on The Wind’ exhibition by GUAC in October 2013 in the Courthouse Gallery, Ennistymon.

The film is made by Fergus Tighe with support of the Clare County Council.

...Read More »

Studio Space

As part of the upcoming exhibition ‘Feasting on the wind’ GUAC have rented a studio space in the Ennistymon Courthouse Gallery for three months. This space acts as a traditional studio space as well as a meeting point for GUAC members, enabling them to create work, discuss ideas and pursue...Read More »

Feasting On The Wind

This year marks the 10th anniversary of the Ground Up Artists Collective (GUAC) and the Ennistymon Courthouse Gallery will play host to their annual members exhibition ‘ Feasting on the Wind’, opening on the 25th October.

Throughout the years GUAC have been involved in a number of...Read More »