This is the powerpoint from my talk at the Craft and People conference in the British Museum on Friday last. It was an excellent conference in an amazing venue. Thanks to the organisers and other presenters and attendees!
Seandalaiocht in the early days
After a long absence and a longer PhD, Seandalaiocht is officially back in business and I begin posting to the blog today. Thanks for continuing to visit the site (14,228 unique visitors to date!), I hope you enjoy future posts and please do comment or contact me with any queries, comments or suggestions.
I am very happy to announce the launch of the definitive SMELT 2010 documentary (although I can't guarantee a Christmas special or director's cut won't appear. Depends how much money I make from this...).
SMELT 2010 was an experimental archaeology weekend held in the National Heritage Park, Ferrycarrig, Co. Wexford with the primary aim of smelting Irish bog ore in a reconstructed bloomery furnace. We had some success, producing iron, but no usable bloom. Still, it was very successful for a first smelt. You can read more in previous blog posts, or soon on the project website, which I am in the process of updating.
The full-length video is up on Vimeo and embedded above but, due to space restrictions, it is fairly low quality. The video is also available on the Seandálaíocht YouTube channel in super high quality HD, but split in two (length restrictions!). They are embedded after the break (click "Read More" below).
You can also download the full video in HD for your own use here (right-click the link and click save as) but be warned that the file is very large (1.2GB) so it will take a long time to download if you have a slow connection. You can download a much smaller (320MB), lower quality, version here if needed.
EDIT: New links and embedded videos have been added to rectify a problem with the audio levels in the original video. Please download again if you have an old version!
I was at the UCD Images of Research awards last night and was lucky enough to come away with two runner-up prizes. I'm chuffed to even get a mention considering the quality of the entries (you can check out all my entries here). I've used one of my runner-up pics as the new blog header (I will be adding new headers over time as the mood takes me) and the other winner can be found in the gallery above. Its called 'Igniting the gases'. There are a couple of other archaeology-related images in the exhibition, including a few rare photos of glass beads from the Bronze Age hillfort at Rathgall, Co. Wicklow.
The final report for the Iron and Change in Europe Conference, which I blogged about previously has just been published on the ESF website. It presents a preliminary picture of the state of knowledge of the iron industry in Europe from its first appearance to the end of the first millenium AD. this is based on summary reports for individual countries presented by the various delegates to the conference, including my one which I posted to the blog in May.
You can read the report below or download it here.
I'm presenting at a very interesting and unique conference next month in Dundalk. Its not your average archaeology conference, in fact I'm probably the only archaeologist speaking at it but it will be exploring some interesting ideas about approaching the future through the lens of the past.
See below for the official blurb.
The County Museum, Dundalk, is hosting a one-day conference, Reach the Future through the Past, on Wednesday 25 August 2010. The conference will explore the use of innovation in a heritage setting, and will examine new ways of promoting concepts of heritage and identity through the use of new technologies. The conference title is inspired by a line in Paul Brady’s The Island, and the purpose of the conference is to apply new ways of cultural and commercial thinking to Irish identity and to the historic Irish experience.
Conference organiser, Brian Walsh:
“Last year, the Global Irish Conference held at Farmleigh attracted representatives of the Irish diaspora and the CEOs of several multinational companies. One of the remarkable features of the conference was that the large number of CEOs who chose to attend the cultural – rather than the business - workshops. This is what gave me the idea that we should explore this theme further. The purpose of our conference here in Dundalk is to find ways of seeking inspiration from the past, and to find new ways of applying and presenting this.”
One of the main themes of the day will be how to innovatively promote and popularize history, identity, archaeology and culture to wider audiences.
The international panel of speakers is drawn from a diverse range of backgrounds: academia, archaeology, animation, broadcasting and business. Speakers include Mary Hawkes-Green (founder, Burren College Art and Design); Brian Dolan (founder, seandalaiocht.com); Ciaran McGuinness (Archer Heritage Planning); Paul Young (co-founder Cartoon Saloon and producer of The Secret of Kells); and Yanky Fachler (historian, business trainer, and author of 6 Officers, 2 Lions, and 750 Mules).
Admission to the conference is free, but prior booking is essential.
For all enquiries, please contact Brian Walsh at the County Museum, Dundalk,+353 42-9327056, Brian.Walsh@dundalktown.ie.
Ok, so its not strictly archaeology but since I can see it out the window from where I sit writing archaeology I figure its allowed. Feast your eyes on the unimaginatively named 'Dublin Wheel', a stunted cousin of London's famous eye. It has been rising beside the Point Theatre for the last few weeks but the spokes only arrived at the weekend. I heard a rumour that it was taken from under the noses of our northern neighbours in Belfast, maybe there was a bit of trouble smuggling it out?
It has yet, as far as I'm aware, to acquire a witty moniker from Dublin's denizens but I'm sure that won't last long. Suggestions in the comments please!
Skellig Michael. Photo Wikimedia Commons
It has been over a month since this blog has seen any action but you are all on notice. This will be changing soon!
Although maybe not too soon, I head down to Kerry tommorrow for a week of sanity and its unlikely I'll be able to post while I'm down there. Still, I'm hoping to make the trip to Skellig Michael and to St. Gobnet's house in Ballyvourney so I should have a few photos to share when I'm back.
In the meantime I'm working on finishing my series of posts on Grey Literature today and will post as soon as I'm done.
Experimental Iron Smelt in Co. Wexford, Ireland
I posted about a month ago about a workshop I attended in London that attempted to bring together iron-researchers across Europe. Each country was asked to answer a number of specific research questions in a short two thousand word document and in a presentation.
These summaries are extremely useful snapshots of research in each country and really served to show areas where research was lacking in various countries (including Ireland).
Anyway, we had to resubmit them recently with any tweaks we wanted to make so I thought I'd put mine up here for those interested. It represents an extremely preliminary review of some of the evidence collected for my dissertation and I will almost certainly completely disagree with aspects of it in the next few months.
I'd welcome comments or thoughts, bearing in mind this is research in progress! You can have a look at the slideshow that went with the talk here.
My masters thesis (available here) has finally been published in article form in the Proceedings of the Royal Irish Academy Section C, almost five years after I finished it. The paper was co-written with Prof. Gabriel Cooney and is available to download on the new-look Royal Irish Academy website here or on my personal site here.
I've also had two smaller publications come out recently including a review for the Irish Museums Association Newsletter and a contribution to a lithics report written by Dr. Graeme Warren on stone tools from a Mesolithic site in Scotland.
Full references are below and you can find (and usually download) my other publications here.