We have been waiting to organize this meeting for a long time, postponed it three times, and finally at the end of January it took place. Within the framework of McClair project we want to explore the cultural heritage of Denis McClair, an outstanding Irishman who designed more than 50 landscape parks on the territory of Ukraine, but who, unfortunately, was forgotten in his homeland.
By popularizing McClair in Ukraine and Ireland, we would like to establish friendly relations between organizations and active people in order to organize further cultural exchanges and projects between our countries and not only on the topic of botany.
But still we have started with botany. Our NGO has had a cooperation agreement with the National Botanic Garden of Ireland (NBG) since last year. Now NBG researcher Nulin Smith is working with Ukrainian colleagues from the Kremenets Botanical Garden, where McClair lived and worked for more than one year. Antonina Lysnychuk, director of the Kremenets Botanical Garden, and her colleague Liana Onuk told about the work of the institution and agreed with a representative of the Irish Botanical Garden on the first scientific projects, starting with access to the plant database that McClair was engaged in and seed exchange.
The meeting was also joined by Nataliia Lushnykova, associate professor of architecture at the National University of water management (Rivne), who has written many articles about McClair’s life and work in Ukrainian and English. So we will stay with McClair for a long time.
We aim to create a network of communities where there are “McClair” parks (or at least their remnants) and offer partners in Ukraine, Ireland and other countries joint projects; we are already negotiating with the Association of Landscape Designers of Ireland (GLDA), considering the possibility of international youth exchanges; a possible place to implement a landscape project in the future – Mizoch village (Rivne region).