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Revenge of the Fairies

Permanent site-specific installation, 2022, 650 clay Marasmius Oreades mushrooms in various dimensions

For millennia, the inhabitants of rural Ireland have been fearfully respecting and keeping a safe distance from fairies. Ancient masters of the land, the fairies are fearsome and mischievous beings that today still inhabit certain territories in Ireland and manifest their presence through “fairy rings”, naturally grown perfect circles of mushrooms that appear at once in strategic spots. Irish poet Jane Wilde – mother of Willie and Oscar Wilde – wrote in 1888 of the deadly consequences mortal men will face if they disturb or set up their homes on fairy rings, “a warning to all who would arouse the vengeance of the fairies by interfering with their ancient rights and possessions and privileges.”

Fort Dunree and the military camp that surrounds it were built under British colonial rule, taking over the green hills and cliffs of Inishowen on the Northern Atlantic Ocean. Red bricks, iron chains, massive cannons and wooden huts are all part of a military compound that was never engaged in any battle or war and that today aimlessly occupies a vast area only to rust and crumble over time. As nature takes over the fort and the camp, ‘Revenge of the Fairies’ introduces a series of large fairy rings made of hundreds of clay Marasmius Oreades in different spaces of the site, signalling that the fairies are slowly claiming back their territory.

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