LATITUDE (55° 26' 08'' North) 2017
LATITUDE was an immersive site-specific project that set out to create dialogue about identity and territory within an era of upheaval regarding borders globally. Latitude sought to evoke the lived experiences and current realities of communities living in evolving post-conflict societies. Latitude presented work in the form of temporary site-specific installation and a filmwork, engaging with communities in three cross-border regions: Mullaghmore, Co. Sligo, Carlingford, Co. Louth and Malin, Co. Donegal.
The Latitude film plays on the notion of interface, evoking individual and collective narratives that reside beneath the threshold of visibility, a conversational drift along the course of the rivers Blackwater, the Erne and the Foyle, which form distinct territorial lines of inquiry that flow from source to sea. The filmwork critically repositions the voices and experiences of local people in the realm of cultural and civic discourse. Imagery is both layered and abstract, moving visually into these underwater terrains creating a dialogue ‘above’ and ‘below’ the waterline. It charts the specifics of each place, interweaving the forces of the tides with the testimonies of interviewees in a continual exchange. The film reflects on connections that have been socially shaped, as well as political and economic interrelationships that are impending and uncertain with Brexit.
LATITUDE engaged with diverse community groups to create a series of temporary sculptures which reflected the form of maritime buoys. The sculptures were fabricated to dissolve when submerged underwater and erode with the ebb and flow of each of the rivers. A series of solar buoys were installed on the surface of the water to function as temporary markers. Illuminated at night they challenged perceptions of (these largely) unseen maritime boundaries. Latitude has strong metaphorical power in terms of how we engage with aspects of place and contested histories.
The project culminated in the ENGAGE colloquium and the premier screening of the LATITUDE film in a compelling outdoor projection event at Malin, Co. Donegal. The ENGAGE colloquium drew on local, national and international contributors to promote discussion on a range of socially engaged arts practice.
Contributors included: Bonita Bennett (District Six Museum, Cape Town), Micaela Martegani (MORE ART, New York), Kevin Murphy (Voluntary Arts Ireland, Derry), Fiona Whelan (Visual Artist, Dublin), Maria McConalogue- Harkin (Malin Head Community Association), Marie Corcoran-Tindill, Fadl Mustapha, (Syrian Resettlement Programme, Donegal)
Mullaghmore Residents and Heritage Group, Cranmore Port Community, Malin Head Community Association.
Latitude was an Open Call 2016, national project funded by the Arts Council / An Chomhairle Ealaíon.