"The entire world is becoming an archipelago” – Édouard Glissant (1997:194)

What is an Island? is an artistic research, curatorial project that set out to explore the value of archipelagic thinking for socially engaged art and education. The first iteration developed a 12 hour pedagogical tour of the West Cork archipelago in 2018, exploring urgent questions around island identity and Brexit through art commissions, lectures and community engagement. 

Expanding on the first, the second project focused more specifically on the idea of a world-archipelago at a time of climate change. Within this iteration a 'listening school' was set up to mediate between islanders' voices and their environments in the  Anthropocene. 

The third and final iteration of the project responded to the challenges and limitations posed by the Coronavirus Covid-19 pandemic by developing an immersive, archipelagic, digital-platform for exploring the virtual capacity of social practice and education. 

A publication What is an Island? is currently in development.


What is an Island? is a partnership event, developed by the BAVA on Sherkin Island @ Dublin School of Creative Arts and GradCAM (DIT), in partnership with CREATE: National Development Agency for Collaborative Arts and Uillinn: West Cork Arts Centre, to present a series of seminars, workshops and exhibitions exploring Art & Archipelagic Thinking in the 21st Century.

Check out Peter Murray's review of What is an Island? Art and Archipelagic Thinking in the 21st Century for Circa 2018:-

Peter Murray joined the What  is an Island? event on 30 July 2018 (courtesy of BAVA, DIT/ GradCAM, Uillinn and CREATE). The voyage took him to three islands off the coast of West Cork accompanied by a (motley) crew of artists, musicians, researchers and thinkers along the way. Here, he reports on an intense day of art actions, research and reflections, all focused on how islands are faring in the 21st century.


Immram is an art manoeuvres collaboration with Marianne Adams, Sheelagh Broderick, Jennifer Corcoran, Moze Jacobs, Brendan McCormack, Eleanor Murray and Peter Tadd. Drone video by Colin Hickey, Orchid Pictures. Watch the video below. 


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