Pictures: Diversity programme unites a variety of women’s groups

Diversity Academy, a pilot project funded by the Cork City Council Arts Office, brought together the Cork Migrant Centre and the Lantern Community Project, Danielle O’Donovan, programme manager at Nano Nagle Place, told The Echo.
Pictures: Diversity programme unites a variety of women’s groups

Pictured at the launch of Nano Nagle Place's Diversity Academy. Diversity Academy, funded by Cork City Arts Office, brought together participants from The Lantern Community Project and Cork Migrant Centre to work with artist Ann Metchelink in an embroidery project inspired by Nano Nagle and the museum's rich textile collections. Picture: Alison Miles /OSM PHOTO

A NEW artist-led community project has united the different groups working at Nano Nagle Place, the centre’s programme manager has said.

Diversity Academy, a pilot project funded by the Cork City Council Arts Office, brought together the Cork Migrant Centre and the Lantern Community Project, Danielle O’Donovan, programme manager at Nano Nagle Place, told The Echo.

“The vision of the Diversity Academy was to develop a space where the users of our site could come together in creativity to express aspects of their cultures and address issues that are important to them,” Ms O’Donovan said.

Teresa Nolan, Mill Street, Co. Cork pictured at the launch of Nano Nagle Place's Diversity Academy. Diversity Academy, funded by Cork City Arts Office, brought together participants from The Lantern Community Project and Cork Migrant Centre to work with artist Ann Metchelink in an embroidery project inspired by Nano Nagle and the museum's rich textile collections. Picture: Alison Miles /OSM PHOTO
Teresa Nolan, Mill Street, Co. Cork pictured at the launch of Nano Nagle Place's Diversity Academy. Diversity Academy, funded by Cork City Arts Office, brought together participants from The Lantern Community Project and Cork Migrant Centre to work with artist Ann Metchelink in an embroidery project inspired by Nano Nagle and the museum's rich textile collections. Picture: Alison Miles /OSM PHOTO

“The Migrant Centre and the Lantern Community Project, which are based here in Nano Nagle Place, both do special things, and they look after people really well,” Ms O’Donovan said. “It just struck me that the Lanterns are here on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, and then the migrants all come in on Friday, and we realised, do you know what, we never mix them up together, and we thought, we really need to put these women together because they’ve got so much to bring to each other.”

Ms O’Donovan said the project was also influenced by a talk she had heard given by Tania Bruguera, co-ordinator of a Manchester project called The School of Inclusion, in which Ms Bruguera suggested that rather than look at migrants as people who want something, society should see migrants as people who have a contribution to make.

Deborah Oniah, Mallow pictured at the launch of Nano Nagle Place's Diversity Academy. Diversity Academy, funded by Cork City Arts Office, brought together participants from The Lantern Community Project and Cork Migrant Centre to work with artist Ann Metchelink in an embroidery project inspired by Nano Nagle and the museum's rich textile collections. Picture: Alison Miles /OSM PHOTO
Deborah Oniah, Mallow pictured at the launch of Nano Nagle Place's Diversity Academy. Diversity Academy, funded by Cork City Arts Office, brought together participants from The Lantern Community Project and Cork Migrant Centre to work with artist Ann Metchelink in an embroidery project inspired by Nano Nagle and the museum's rich textile collections. Picture: Alison Miles /OSM PHOTO

“All of these amazing women who are coming from all over the world to live in Cork, bring so much richness, and then we’ve got all these beautiful creative ladies in the Lantern Project, who are doing crochet and art and things, we said ‘Right, get them all into one room’, and so we did, and the magic just happened,” Ms O’Donovan said.

“We had a beautiful facilitator called Ann Metchelink, and they all started talking to each other over cups of tea. They shared life stories, and what they said when they talked about it afterwards was humanity is humanity, and we all have these shared experiences in our lives, no matter where we are from, and we all actually feel the same.”

Helen O'Keeffe, Creativity & Change of Crawford MTU pictured at the launch of Nano Nagle Place's Diversity Academy. Diversity Academy, funded by Cork City Arts Office, brought together participants from The Lantern Community Project and Cork Migrant Centre to work with artist Ann Metchelink in an embroidery project inspired by Nano Nagle and the museum's rich textile collections. Picture: Alison Miles /OSM PHOTO
Helen O'Keeffe, Creativity & Change of Crawford MTU pictured at the launch of Nano Nagle Place's Diversity Academy. Diversity Academy, funded by Cork City Arts Office, brought together participants from The Lantern Community Project and Cork Migrant Centre to work with artist Ann Metchelink in an embroidery project inspired by Nano Nagle and the museum's rich textile collections. Picture: Alison Miles /OSM PHOTO

Ms O’Donovan said one of the aims of the project was to use as an inspiration the example of Nano Nagle, the 18th century pioneer of Catholic education in Ireland, and the founder of the Presentation Sisters.

“Nano Nagle empowered women by teaching them how to sew, and how to make lace, and that actually allowed them to make their own money and be independent women,” she said.

Brenda Aguilar, from El Salvador now living in Togher, Cork pictured at the launch of Nano Nagle Place's Diversity Academy. Diversity Academy, funded by Cork City Arts Office, brought together participants from The Lantern Community Project and Cork Migrant Centre to work with artist Ann Metchelink in an embroidery project inspired by Nano Nagle and the museum's rich textile collections. Picture: Alison Miles /OSM PHOTO
Brenda Aguilar, from El Salvador now living in Togher, Cork pictured at the launch of Nano Nagle Place's Diversity Academy. Diversity Academy, funded by Cork City Arts Office, brought together participants from The Lantern Community Project and Cork Migrant Centre to work with artist Ann Metchelink in an embroidery project inspired by Nano Nagle and the museum's rich textile collections. Picture: Alison Miles /OSM PHOTO

Ms O’Donovan said each of the participants in the Diversity Academy made a piece of embroidery under the theme ‘home’, and they drew their inspiration from two pieces of 19th century embroidery in the Nano Nagle Place museum.

The artworks produced by the Diversity Academy can be seen at https://nanonagleplace.ie/

More in this section

Sponsored Content

EL_music

Podcast: 1000 Cork songs 
Singer/songwriter Jimmy Crowley talks to John Dolan

Listen Here

Add Echolive.ie to your home screen - easy access to Cork news, views, sport and more