Lisa Fingleton is an eco-social artist, writer and organic farmer. Living and working on a small organic, social farm near the sea, she has spent many years cultivating deep-rooted connections between art, food and farming.
Her book The Local Food Project explores the power of growing and eating local food. Lisa is concerned about the fact that we are importing so much of our food and losing the capacity to be self-sufficient, despite what we know about climate change and carbon footprint. For the last number of years she has undertaken the ’30 day local food challenge’, when she eats only food grown on the island of Ireland, for the month of September.
She strives to ‘be the change’ she wishes to see in the world and likes to walk the talk, grow the food and integrate life with her studio practice. For the last number of years she has been working closely with her partner Rena Blake on The Barna Way, an ecological art and biodiversity project on their farm. Last year they planted 10,000 native trees on their land.
As a socially engaged professional artist Lisa brings almost 20 years’ experience of creating work, installing exhibitions, editing films, engaging with communities/audiences and delivering public art projects. Lisa received an MA in documentary film at Goldsmiths College, London in 2015. She is also a Fine Art graduate from NCAD.
Lisa recently completed the Haumea course with Dr. Cathy Fitzgerald and is currently involved in the Breaking Cover, art and ecology programme at the Irish Museum of Modern Art. Lisa was a founding member of the Kerry Climate Action Network and has worked as a graphic harvester/artist for the EPA (Climate consultation) and Transition Kerry.
Through the residency Lisa is connecting with artists, groups and schools who are interested in exploring the cross sections between creativity, climate action and biodiversity. According to Lisa:
“What this global pandemic has shown us is our vulnerability but also our capacity to adapt to unprecedented change. I believe we need artists and cultural producers to engage the imagination, to enable us to move into the future in new and creative ways”.
Through drawing, observation and eco literacy, Lisa invites artists of all ages to connect with the world around them. For Biodiversity Week 2021. Lisa hosted two virtual workshops (‘Drawing with Nature’ and ‘Creating Your Nature Journal’). Over 500 hundred people attended the two events which Lisa believes in a testament to the the power of art and the imagination to spark public engagement around the big issues of climate change but also localised issues such as the devastating fires in Killarney National Park.
“In the past artists painted often very idealised landscapes. Now we are being called to re-explore our relationship with nature and how we represent her. A lot of the time I think nature is the most amazing artist of all”