101.5 x 76 cm
[Documents to be given to Dublin City Council’s Heritage Department and a property developer in order to negotiate the inclusion of the name ‘Ballymun’ in a street name within a new, affluent residential area somewhere away from Ballymun.]
Garden Script as it appears in the catalogue Then*.
Garden (2007) is a photograph of a ‘stolen’ architectural model (borrowed from the planner’s offices) of Ballymun’s new developments and a script, both to be presented to Dublin City Council’s Heritage Department and a property developer in order to negotiate the inclusion of the name ‘Ballymun’ in a street name within a new, affluent residential area somewhere away from Ballymun. In the 1980’s and ’90’s the reputation of Ballymun’s estate had become so bad that anybody living beyond its periphery disassociated themselves from its name. Town planning rules state that new names given to an area or street are meant to be based on literal and local relevance: existing historical precedent within the location. Chodzko’s act of displacing ‘Ballymum’ from its original location was intended to displace this name relevance elsewhere in the city, dissipating or confusing the negative associations with its source and therefore alleviating the prejudice against it. Garden is an offer of an excuse to permit the official expansion of a name.
Garden was shown in Dublin as part of Chodzko’s expanded solo exhibition in the city, Then, along with M-path (2006 – ) at Dublin City Gallery The Hugh Lane, and Next Meeting: The foyer of the Hagens Hotel, Måløy, Sogn og Fjordane, on the island of Vågsøy… (2007), lithographic print on paper, B2, on a hoarding in Balbutcher Lane, Ballymun Dublin 11. *These works were brought together in the catalogue, Then, published 2008, (essays by Jaki Irvine, Andrew Wilson and Caoimhín Mac Giolla Léith. Edited by Rosa Ainley. Designed by Trockenbrot/Claudia Shenck).
Garden operates as a threshold (specifically towards a form of vision – in this case a very specific and practical new perception of place), connecting it to other specifically garden works such as; Here (2015), O, you happy roots, branch and mediatrix (2020), The Green, the Flow, the Path of the Game (2021) and, more broadly; Untitled Stile (Teenage Version) (1991), Untitled [boundary] (1991), Night Shift (2004), M-path (2006), Hole (2007), Sowmat (2007) and Borrowed Cold Lodge (2008), etc. whilst also identifying a powerful or magical (or in this case politically significant) patch of earth (eg: cell-a (2002), Settlement (2004), Corner (2007) and A Hostile Environment (2019) etc).
As with Better Scenery (2000 – ), Ants Choose Position for Sequins – 2 Seconds Interval (2003), White Magic (2005), Pattern for a Procession with Two Masks (2007), Corner (2007), Next meeting: Beside the TV transmitter on the highest part of Szechenyi Hill…(2010), Because… (2013) and O, you happy roots, branch and mediatrix (2020) etc, Garden operates in the vibrating space between two apparently disconnected sites apparently communicating with each other. A garden moving beyond control appears in We are Ready for Your Arrival (2013) [ exhibition at Raven Row, London, 2013 ] and the banishment of the human from the Garden in Expulsion from the Garden of Eden (2015).