Detonating Rough Ground

Liam Kelly

    Research output: Non-textual formExhibition


    This exhibition, curated by Liam Kelly, includes works by two artists whose photography, in differing ways, engages with the experiential representation of trauma and memory and the sensory and affective aspects of conflict as laid into ‘haunted’ rubble. Sophie Ristelhueber’s ( France ) photographic works recorded in zones of conflict such as Palestine Kuwait, Iraq and Bosnia register, inter alia, the dismantled apparatus and encodings of war and its aftermath – the psycho-graphic as well as the physical tracings and scarrings of a tormented terrain and the exposed forensic evidence of bombed out buildings. She has described herself in revealing the subterranean landscape : ‘I am an artist standing a little like an archaeologist’ For this show we exhibit ‘Stitches’ ( 2005) . One element of this composite work includes b/w close-up photographs taken in Palestinian cities of ‘haunted’ earthy tracings. These are juxtaposed by snippets of statements by politicians related to war, embroidered on cloth. In this off setting of text, textile and terrain ‘… we see the world’s sewing work as it goes, nose to the ground.’ ( R.M. Mason,2005) It has been stated that Paul Seawright’s( N.Ireland) new photographic works in ’Volunteer’ ( 2011), shot in the USA, bring together the two major themes of his practice, contemporary cities and the representation of conflict . The exhibition will allow for examination of how ‘Volunteer’ extends his previous work, interrogating how contemporary conflict might be represented at a distance from the battlefield without ‘… recourse to drama-centric imagery ‘ in selected US sites where the rebounding trauma and tension of the war in Afghanistan is registered. He presents the landscape of the American city as a type of battlefield where the spectre of war in the Middle East is tangible on every street corner, college campus, town square and front yard. ‘Volunteer’ is a survey of sorts, landscapes from today's fraying, centrelesspost 9-11 North American cities. Each photograph made at the location of amilitary recruiting station, where a different battle is being fought - tofind young men and women to volunteer for service in Afghanistan. These new works comment not just on the ongoing war and the battle to recruit new soldiers, but thecontemporary North American city, a landscape littered with thrift stores,gun dealerships, fast food outlets, nightclubs, car dealerships, strip mallsand pawn shops. It is in these spaces on the margins of small towns andcities that the recruiters move amongst the unemployed, immigrants, ethnicminorities and students to find the volunteers of tomorrow. This exhibition has been curated to prompt a dialogue between these two sets of works related in differing ways to war and the affective charge of architecture and terrain.
    Original languageEnglish
    Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 2011
    EventDetonating Rough Ground - Ormeau Baths Gallery / Belfast
    Duration: 21 Jul 201127 Aug 2011

    Bibliographical note

    Outputmediatype: Photographs


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