This Being Where We Live: Clondalkin Paper Mill Action Group

2019 Selection

Designed by Clare Bell

Editor: Nathan O’Donnell

Letterpress workshops: Mary Plunkett (National Print Museum)

Printer: Ciaran Smith (Plus Print)

Categories: Editorial

Industry: Civic

Led by writer Nathan O’Donnell, The Mill was a project inspired by the history of the 1980s’ strikes at Clondalkin Paper Mill. It engaged with a group of young writers in Clondalkin, called Inklinks, (based at Collinstown Park Community College), to produce content for a magazine. The outcome, This Being Where We Live, derived from the legacy of the strikes and a history of radical publishing. Clondalkin was home to one of the last of Ireland’s paper mills; the closure of the mill in 1982 marked the end of a centuries-old traditional industry along the Camac river, as well as generating an important moment in the history of protest in Ireland.

This Being Where We Live takes its cue from these legacies, focusing on the history of paper-making in Ireland, as well as the intersections between print culture and protest. The programme for young people took place in Autumn 2018, with participants taking part in writing, photography and journalism exercises, as well as getting hands-on experience with letterpress and other forms of printing. They learned about the history of paper, publishing, and print in Ireland. The programme was designed to respond to the environment of Clondalkin; participants were encouraged to think about place and community—with the aim of increasing their own sense of agency around political, and other forms of activism.

The resulting magazine, 'This Being Where We Live', used archival images of the strikers and workers, letterpress work, writing generated by Inklinks members, the work of local poets, and oral histories of the workers and strikers themselves.

Paper: Munken Lynx at 100gsm. Covers (Vanguard at 300 gsm) utilised left-over cover stock, of different colours, from previous jobs. (Save our planet).

Printed and bound by Plus Print, Dublin.

This publication is the outcome of a public art project, The Mill, commissioned by South Dublin County Council as part of the public art programme, In Context 4 - In Our Time, 2016-2019.