Part of a wider body of work inspired by the decline of the silk weaving industry in The Liberties and in the context of an innercity Greening Strategy, First Cut is a series of unique handmade paper works incorporating the pulped first cut of grass from the small lawn of the newly opened Weaver Park. Made two hundred years after the Earl of Meath was told a greater return could be made growing grass than collecting weaver’s rents, MacLeman engaged staff of Dublin City Council’s Parks, Biodiversity and Landscape Services to make works commemorating a new era in the site’s history. Stencils were used to incorporate the grass pulp into cotton linters as a single sheet using a couching process and variety of shades achieved by layering pulp of varying translucency. The gilded forms of the series are reminiscent of museum artefacts and structures in the park, and at times pay homage to notable figures from Renaissance garden design.
The First Cut series was made with thanks to Pulp Paper Arts Workshop, funded by an Arts Council Project Award 2018 and developed during a Dublin City Council Residential Residency supported by Galway City Council.