end

AN ART EXPEDITION ON A SOLAR POWERED ELECTRIC VESSEL ALONG RIVERS & LAKES CONNECTING COMMUNITIES ACROSS IRELAND TO BUILD A ZERO CARBON FUTURE.

ARTS COUNCIL OPEN CALL AWARD / SFI DISCOVER AWARD 2021

The 48M at Tullamore Harbour, March 2021

WITH
THANKS
TO


the BOATsthe EXPEDITIONsthe ARTthe SCIENCE

We set out, in early 2019, to create a carbon neutral boat to raise awareness of climate change, a symbol of our growth towards a green future - undertaking a two year voyage across the country on the inland waterways and working with artist, scientists and communities to harness our collective imagination and spark climate action. Initially we planned to do this on the 48M, a historic barge built in 1929, leased to us by Waterways Ireland which we planned to convert to solar electric in 2020-2021.

Two and half years later - following a global pandemic, a worldwide supply chain crisis and a decision by Ireland’s closest neighbour to leave the European Union - we have faced many challenges. We were always aware that the transformation of the 48M, a heavy steel barge, to electric propulsion would be costly, and as our knowledge of the Inland Waterways grew, we became aware of additional issues such as bio security, weed growth, height limitations, and other factors, leading us to question the suitability of the 48 M as a fully mobile unit.

In response to these challenges, we began to imagine a more flexible project: the 48M fitted out as a solar powered headquarters for the Eco Showboat Project - a moored hub for our art and science collaborations, for workshops and exhibitions, located somewhere central - while a lightweight fully solar boat navigates the rivers and lakes, visiting urban and rural communities to spark conversations about climate change, and intersecting with collaborating artists, scientists and activists who are developing local ecological projects.

In Summer 2021 we acquired the Redstart, a small yacht converted to an electric riverboat in the UK. We are now fitting her out with a solar array, and we will rebaptise her Mayfly before launching her in Spring 2022 to begin our first Eco Boat tour. The Redstart comes on a trailer, which offers us access to cities, towns and villages with navigable waterways across the island, regardless of whether they are connected to the inland waterways network.

Concurrently, we will be working on the 48M where it is moored now in Tullamore, with the aim of making her into a floating Eco Hub, leaving her moored where she is until we have the funds necessary to convert her to an exemplary carbon neutral vessel. It may take several years and multiple steps to get there, but fortunately we have a 21 year lease on the 48M, and perhaps she can be launched as a solar vessel to celebrate her 100th birthday!

Design study for the Mayfly, September 2021

The Mayfly on its trailer, September 2021

Inside the 48M, Tullamore Harbour, July 2021

the BOATsthe EXPEDITIONsthe ARTthe SCIENCE

The Eco Showboat (48M) project

as a covered outdoor venue, adaptable to many different types of art installation, accessible to all publics

The Eco Showboat (48M) project

as a stage that can be set up to host live events with the public on the quayside and only performers coming onboard

The Eco Showboat (48M) project

as an outdoor cinema with rear projection screen suspended in front of an ultra short-throw laser projector

Adrian Conway

Aidan Cleary

Alan Kelly

Alison Alderton

Andrea Fitzpatrick

Andrew Deakin

Andy Walsh

Ann Liston

Ann Murphy

Ann Phelan

Anne Marie Deacy

Aoibhean Bird

Aoife Mcgrath

Averil Gannon

Basil Mannion

Bernie O’Flaherty

Brenda Tobin

Catriona Hilliard

Celine Reilly

Chelsea Canavan

Claire Riordan

Cliona Maher

Clodagh O’Hagan

Colin Becker

Conor Nolan

Constanze O’Toole

Cormac McCarthy

Dave Wall

Deirdre Power

Derek Kelly

Donal Boland

Donna McGreevy

Ena Cleary


Filippo Giancarlo Martinelli

Fran Igoe

Gerardette Bailey

Gerry Burke

Glenn Loughran

Hilary Murray

James Carton

Joanna Mcglynn

John Flanagan

John McDonagh

John Murnane

John O’Neill

John Stack

Jobst Graeve

Josephine Kelliher

Jürgen Huber

Karl Wallace

Kevin O’Dwyer

Liz Burns

Lucina Russell

Máirín Ó Cuireáin

Malcolm Bridge

Marcus Collier

Marie Hanlon

Marie Mannion

Marta Golubowska

Mary Mullins

Melanie Scott

Muireann Ni Chonaill

Neil Higgins

Niall Armstrong

Nina McGowan

Noel O’Connor

Nollaig Feeney

Nora Hickey M’Sichili

Orla Foster

Owen Hickey

Paddy Harkin

Pat Liston

Pat Lysaght

Patrick McBride

Paul Berg

Paul Bird

Philip Delamere

Pippa Little

Rachel Kavanagh

Ray Yeates

Rhona McGrath

Roise O’Shea

Sally O’Leary

Shane Anderson

Sharon O’Grady

Sheena Barrett

Sheevaun Thompson 

Sheila Deegan

Sinead Hurson

Siobhán Bourke

Siobhan McQuaid

Siobhan Mulcahy

Stephen Daniels

Stephen Napier

Tania Banotti

Thomas Carolan

Vincent O’Shea

Study of the Mayfly, with pop-up exhibition & workshops, at Killeen Lock, Killaloe

The Eco Showboat (48M) project

The Boats

Mayfly and Eco Showboat