Introduction to the Midland and Broadstone Shed Projects

My practice is concerned with the infinite continued progress of existence and events in the past, present and future as it affects people and things.

In 2009-2010 I investigated an abandoned, leftover space in Broadstone which has taken on a new life of calm and tranquility after a life of activity, social interaction, conflict and intense production. It is a space that is invested with traces of the people who once “inhabited” it with their sweat and breath, and it has encouraged me to look at current values in a different way. Merleau-Ponty would call it an “anthropological space” where mind, body and the world cannot be separated.

         Temporal layering of space, time, colour and technology can lead to a consideration of both the historical past of the location itself and the present moment, that soon passes. The effect should be interrogative, with the viewer reflecting on the elements that interact and co-exist encompassing layers of history, records, skills, knowledge, memories and the passing of time.


The Broadstone Project

Photographs from this project are on permanent display in Kildare Town Library.

Introduction

This ongoing art project was initially based in the abandoned and condemned sheds situated beside the Bus Éireann depot in Broadstone, Dublin 2. Consisting of a variety of media the project is developed by exploring the remains of the original railway lines that stretched across the country, some of which are still in use. 

The first project, Broadstone Shed, initially explored the history of the location and of the people who worked in a railway shed in Broadstone.  The work takes a number of forms, which include video, sound, photography, drawings and sculpture models. A number of former employees have been interviewed and their stories recorded. 

This site follows the progress of the project as it has evolved over a number of years.

The second project, Midland - Lár Tíreconsists of travelling the route of the former Midland Great Western Railway by bicycle, documenting the experience with photographs, video and audio recordings and notebooks. 



Broadstone Shed

The Broadstone Project is a series of photographs, drawings and videos of the abandoned and condemned sheds, beside the Bus Éireann depot, in Broadstone, Dublin 2. It is located beside the route of the new Luas Cross City line which once ran from Broadstone to Liffey Junction. The work explores the history of the location and of the people who worked there. The poignant, yet vibrant images ultimately seek to express a sense of wonder and admiration for the skills used there. 

This is the first project from which developed the MIDLAND PROJECT


Midland Project

As a follow-on project from Broadstone Shed project I decided to cycle the route of the former Midland and Great Western Railway to see what had happened to the old stations. I initially intended to take photographs in the style of O'Dea who took photos of stations from the 1930s to the 1970s.

The project developed after I began knocking on doors of inhabited stations. This led to me documenting the patterns and rhythms of the route while absorbing the histories, environment and social nuances of the locale.  I met and photographed current and former railway workers, as well current inhabitants of former stations. These are a disparate, yet homogeneous group of people who willingly shared their stories. 

In the end the structure of the railway itself, rather than being the embodiment of the project, positioned itself as the support and the host of this work, which allowed for an exploration from the past to the present.



 





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