Holly Mullarkey and Emma O’ Toole with the survivors of the Tuam Mother and Baby home through the advocacy of Breeda Murphy
As part of Clay journeys , Tear Boats is a collaboration between Holly Mullarkey, Emma O’ Toole and the survivors of the Tuam Mother and Baby home through the advocacy of Breeda Murphy. The Tear Boats are an offering from the artists to the survivors, a vessel for their grief, a boat to carry their individual stories and sorrow to the healing ocean.
Holly Mullarkey created a video installation to commemorate the unceremonious burial of 798 infants. The porcelain tear boats are dissolved in the tide of healing time. The Irish name for fuschia is a metaphor, Deora Dé (tears of god). The artist juxtaposed the metaphor of nature weeping by placing fuchsia in the porcelain tear boats.
The Great tragedy of the Tuam mother and baby home is a lived experience by the Tuam survivors. Holly and Emma O Toole had hoped to workshop the pouring of white porcelain ‘tears’ into pre-cast tear boats with the survivors. Unfortunately Covid 19 prevented this from happening.
Holly and Emma hope to gift the tear boats, which they created together, to the Tuam survivors as holding vessels to carry their sorrow, along with a copy of the poem and video. A gathering will be arranged by Breeda Murphy and the Tuam Survivors once restrictions are lifted.