The Shaking Bog Festival is a two-day, immersive event that aims to reawaken and enhance our perspectives of the natural world. A plethora of diverse experiences will be on offer: readings & discussions from world renowned authors and poets; dramatic presentations at dusk and dawn; a bumper day of art and nature events for children, workshops, conversations, concerts and many more which promises to be a truly magical affair, to end what we hope is a stimulating and life-enhancing weekend.
But in the last fifteen years or so, perhaps as a response to increased urbanisation and global insecurity - fuelled by environmental concerns - there has been a remarkable upsurge in new literary writing about nature. Indeed, nature writing has now become a publishing phenomenon and there would seem to be an insatiable appetite for it amongst readers and the wider public.
The Shaking Bog exists to highlight this burgeoning art form as a way of describing and nurturing the deep connectedness between nature and writing. But whilst literature, both poetry and prose, is its core concern, it also explores the narratives of other art forms - thereby presenting a rich and varied tapestry of engagement. This wider canvas varies from festival to festival and podcast to podcast, but can include; dramatic prose, the written scores of music, the visual language of art and the embodied narratives of dance, as they each respond to nature in their own individual yet universal ways. The aim is to offer different portals for people to enter into a deeper relationship with the world around them.
When I am among trees, especially the willows and the honey locust, equally the beech, the oaks and the pines, they give off such hints of gladness.
I would almost say that they save me, daily.
It is local in spirit but international in aspiration. It celebrates the finest literary writing about nature from across the world, ambitiously reaching outwards to those beyond county and national borders. But whilst its Festival brings artists, naturalists and audiences alike to the Wicklow hills, it is also firmly rooted in the local and embedded in the community and its surrounding landscape.
The Shaking Bog Festival takes place at indoor and outdoor locations throughout the valley including; in fields and forests; on riverbanks and hillsides; in tents, churches and schools. Likewise, the podcast remains firmly rooted in the local landscape whilst reaching out to a wider vision of Irish landscape through a broad canvas of contributing artists.
The Shaking Bog could not exist without the generous support of its funders; Wicklow County Council, Wicklow County Council Arts Office, The Arts Council of Ireland, Wicklow Partnership’s LEADER, National Parks & Wildlife Services, Wicklow Heritage Department, Wicklow Uplands Council, Mermaid Arts Centre and Poetry Ireland.
We are also grateful for the support of our Creative Partners; Mermaid Arts Centre and Fighting Words.
A very special word of thanks to The Shaking Bog’s sponsors including; Coillte Nature, DRes Durkan Residential and King Tree Services.
Finally, we appreciate the support of our presenting partners including; Mermaid Arts Centre, St Patrick’s Church, Enniskerry, the Glencree Centre for Peace & Reconciliation and the Glencree Society.