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‘Sire’ by Maria McKinney

  • Installation
Photograph of a visitor exploring an exhibition.
Somewhere in Between. Sire by Maria McKinney, in collaboration with Michael Doherty and David MacHugh, Thomas SG Farnetti. Source: Wellcome Collection. Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International (CC BY-NC 4.0).

Articulates complicated scientific ideas in a clear way

The Times

‘Sire’ makes visible the industrialised practices that have come to characterise modern cattle breeding. In the process it questions how our alienation from agriculture is changing our relationship with food.

Weaving pagan motifs with genetic patterns, ‘Sire’ is an invitation to think critically about contemporary cultivation and consumption.

About the contributors

Maria McKinney


Maria McKinney is an artist based in Dublin. She undertook a residency at University College Dublin in 2016. Her work explores the impact of human intervention on the natural world, often bringing together unusual contemporary materials and traditional craft techniques. She was awarded a Wellcome Arts Award in 2015 to produce ‘Sire’.

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Professor Michael Doherty


Michael Doherty is Dean and Professor of Veterinary Clinical Studies at the School of Veterinary Medicine. His research includes dairy-herd health and the merging of folkloric and scientific veterniary practices in rural communities.

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Professor David MacHugh


David MacHugh is a professor in genomics and Associate Dean of Research at the School of Agriculture and Food Science at University College Dublin. His work includes the study of animal genomics and its relationship to the food chain.