Mon June 6th: Arriving in Letterfrack
The conference will take place in the GMIT furniture college (designed by O’Donnell and Tuomey Architects) in Letterfrack, Connemara, along the Wild Atlantic Way, on the western edge of Europe. Letterfrack lies within Connemara National Park at the head of Ballinakill harbour. The conference starts at 2:30 pm with a walk, followed by two keynotes and a shared meal.
Tue June 7th: MAKING AND BUILDING. THINGS DONE.
We seek presentations about exemplary projects that grew out of specific places thanks to the genius loci. We’ll focus on the results of fruitful collaborations between people (rural communities, architects, artists, planners, development agencies…) and place, in rural Ireland and across Europe. The afternoon continues with a walk, followed by another keynote and a shared meal.
Wed June 8th: FUTURE FARMING. WHAT ARE WE GROWING? BY WHOM FOR WHOM?
We seek presentations about local farming enterprise, by and about farming and fisher families, and small holders, about shellfish and seaweed farming, artisanal foods, slow foods, organic products, agritourism, heritage farming, nature farming, woodland farming and wilderness farming, in rural Ireland and across Europe. The afternoon continues with a walk, followed by another keynote and a shared meal.
Thu June 9th: CULTURE, FARMING AND HABITAT – NEW INTERSECTIONS.
The two final sessions centre on the possibilities of trans-disciplinary exchange and ideas for future models. We seek presentations about useful landscapes, about ecosystems and their services, and about the future production of culture, energy, food and rural community, in Ireland and elsewhere. The conference closes with two final keynotes and discussion.
Letterfrack lies within Connemara National Park, along the Wild Atlantic Way, on the western edge of Europe.
“We do not belong to those who have ideas only among books (...). It is our habit to think outdoors - walking, leaping, climbing, dancing, preferably on lonely mountains or near the sea where even the trails become thoughtful.” (F. Nietzsche)
This is a meeting of local, national and international researchers and practitioners engaged with rural life and interested in its future. We aim to foster multidisciplinary exchanges of knowledge and ideas about art, culture, architecture, farming, design, landscape, planning… and how best to sustain rural places. In gathering together a wide range of experience, by immersing ourselves in place, by walking, talking, looking and listening, and by spending proper time each day to debate a particular theme, we hope to encourage and inspire new dialogues between individuals and across disciplines.
Exchanges take place in the field, over lunch, and dinner, and follow on from single plenary presentations that allow all participants to hear and respond to one another.