Laura Skehan: Political Land / Poetic Territory


Preview: 4-6pm Saturday 22 October
Lismore Castle Arts: St Carthage Hall



Lismore Castle Arts is delighted to announce our next exhibition at St Carthage Hall will be a solo exhibition of commissioned new work by Laura Skehan, the winner of the inaugural Origins solo exhibition prize.

Political Land|Poetic Territory is a single channel video projection, made at a variety of locations across Ireland which include the Giants Causeway, Collins Barracks and the artist’s studio. Juxtaposing footage of soldiers practice marches, ancient geological landforms and the artist’s hand shaping and creating forms from clay, Skehan draws a line of enquiry through our manipulation of borders, hinting at their destructive role in our societies. A text by Seamas O’Reilly forms a narration drawing the disparate elements together – while a soundtrack made from auto-generating software suggests a visitor centre informative documentary.

Spread throughout the space are Skehan’s clay sculptures used in the film, breaking a straightforward viewing of the film, and reminding us of the artist’s hand and why an artist creates, and to what purpose it serves. The artist’s use of gesture in the film and sculptures, which sometimes appears almost violent, relate the known properties of the material used with physical geology and the exhibition space itself.

The work’s title plays on the exhibition title ‘Poetic Land, Political Territory’ curated by Christina Bridgewater for the Arts Council of England as part of the National Touring Exhibition programme (1995). This exhibition was part of a wider showcase of contemporary artwork, drawing on Northern Ireland in the post-Peace Process era of 1994.

The Origins solo exhibition prize is awarded each year by Lismore Castle Arts to the most promising graduate from the degree shows across the Republic of Ireland. Laura Skehan graduated from Dublin Institute of Technology in June 2016. Origins 2016 is kindly supported by Dublin Institute of Technology.



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