Monthly Archives: September 2022

Quiet Conversations: Cathy Fitzgerald / Simon Read

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Cathy Fitzgerald. Originally trained in the biological sciences, Dr Cathy Fitzgerald is an Irish-based, New Zealand born eco-artist, environmental activist, educator and the Founder Director of the global ONLINE Ecoliteracy Programme. She has lived in rural South Carlow since 2001, where her The Hollywood Forest Story (begun in 2008) explores how a move toward ecological forestry practices are a critical response to the ecological emergency.

Simon Read. Simon Read is an artist working across several media, a writer, educator, environmental researcher with a particular interest in estuaries and coastal dynamics, and Associate Professor in Fine Art at Middlesex University. He has a long-standing relationship with Higher Education in Norway and lived for forty years on a sea-going barge based on the Suffolk Coast. His diverse experience enables him to foster practical discussion between academics, engineers, government agency officers, politicians and local communities based on the interface of cultural and environmental change.


I have known Simon since we were students together, worked with Cathy on her doctoral degree, and later studied the Earth Charter with her. 

My Care’ is the title of Bernard O’Donaghue’s English translation of Nuala Ní Dhomhnaill’s An Obair, from her bi-lingual collection Northern Lights (2018). It speaks for all those whose age and/or sense of responsibility holds them close to the griefs that flesh is heir to, overwhelmingly, today, those associated with the climate emergency. A conversation between these two artists might start from the question the poem leads to: ‘How’s the care’? A conversation where concern for the future that children represent would be framed by their commitment to environmental work, a shared commitment to a ‘task that is not easy’.