Image of Front cover of How Much is Enough? publication

Tickets for the launch can be booked here through Eventbrite.

This Critical Conversation event celebrates and marks the launch of two publications; artist Michelle Malone’s O To Have a Little House and artist Kate O’Shea’s How Much is Enough? which traces Kate’s Just City residency 2020 -2022.

Kate and Michelle will be in conversation with community worker and sociologist John Bissett who has recently published, It’s Not Where you Live, It’s How You Live: Class and Gender struggles in a Dublin Estate.   At the heart of this conversation, is the connection between the materiality of their combined writing, their critical reflection, art and activist practices.  Chaired by Common Ground, they will explore their personal and public connections to social housing in Dublin 8 and the changing landscape of the city. 

The evening will also include readings from Michelle and John and music from artist Evelyn Broderick.

O TO HAVE A LITTLE HOUSE was published in 2022 by the Lab Gallery to accompany Michelle Malone’s solo exhibition at The LAB Gallery in 2022. The publication identifies how Michelle’s work is rooted in a desire to materially explore working class histories through personal experience. The exhibition considered her childhood experience of home and most particularly her grandmother’s house, having moved from flat 1A in Fatima Mansions to new social housing in the suburbs.  The publication seeks to capture some of Michelle’s research including the poem which inspired the title of the show by Pádraic Colum, a new poem responding to the show by Michelle and her father, an essay by Michelle expanding on her treatment of materials and a series of installation photographs from the exhibition at the LAB by Louis Haugh.  The publication offers additional opportunities for readers to explore Michelle’s artistic practice in diverse rooms, from the domestic to the academic, and hold space for important discussions centred on personal histories and experiences of working class materiality in art.

HOW MUCH IS ENOUGH?  Kate O’Shea & the Just City Residency; Reflections on an embedded practice at the intersection of art and activism Published in 2023 this booklet by Common Ground, Create and Half Letter Press in Chicago, traces the richness and diversity of artist Kate O’Shea’s response to the Just City Counter Narrative Neighbourhood award 2020 – 2022.

The residency located in studio 468, supported by Common Ground, was bolstered by a wide range of established community development organisations with a vibrant history of community-based cultural practice, which is explored in this publication. Featuring contributions from Dr Karen Till, Dr Krini Kafiris & Dr Eve Olney of The Radical Institute, and John Bissett, this publication provides a vital primer for the role of the artist in place at a critical juncture of social change and the conditions needed to support collaborative art practice.

THE PEOPLE’S SHED was established by Evelyn Broderick as a response to Common Ground’s initiative, A Radical Imagination.  It connects methodologies, pedagogies and brings people together where they make, assemble and exchange skills in studio 468 (2022 – 2023).  Acting as a space for sharing skills and knowledge, it explores ideas of how a community’s social fabric can be discussed, honoured and fostered through collective hand skills, making, and thinking.  The People’s Shed draws threads from a long history of men’s shed, women’s spaces, music circles, hedge schools and different forms of alternative pedagogical spaces that have always existed.

 HALF LETTER PRESS is a publishing imprint and online store initiated by Temporary Services. Temporary Services is Brett Bloom & Marc Fischer.  They have published booklets as an element of their collaborative work since 1998. They build long-term support and expanded audiences for people that work creatively in experimental ways. Half Letter Press are particularly interested in supporting people and projects that have had difficulty finding financial and promotional assistance through mainstream commercial channels.

The LAB was established by Dublin City Council in 2005 as a municipal arts hub, housing gallery, rehearsal and incubation spaces for a range of art forms. The LAB Gallery supports emerging art practices and delivers a year round programme of free events for all ages.  In addition to Dublin City Council, the LAB Gallery is supported by the Arts Council.

Common Ground is a celebrated locally based arts organisation in the heart of a historic and ever-changing area in the south west inner city of Dublin. It’s been working for nearly 23 years to ensure equal access to and participation in the arts in its immediate community, and in communities nationally.

Create is the national development agency for collaborative arts. Their work initiates cross-sectoral national and international partnerships which support artists and communities to co-create work of depth, ambition and excellence. Create believes that by working together, artists and communities can purposefully explore how collaborative arts engage in distinct, relevant and powerful ways with the urgent social, cultural and political issues of our times.