Ekphrasis 2020 is a collection of images by visual artist Susan Sweeney in which the artist explores the notion of liminality, an in-between state of mind that occurs when sudden events happen or when there is uncertainty or uncomfortable disorientation in one’s life. Liminal or threshold is a halfway position representing a space that bridges the familiar with the uncertain.
The Exhibition provides a journey through 29 images. Each image is accompanied by a Haiku ekphrastic poem commissioned by the Artist.
“Furious Velocity” The artist explores the space between two tram stations, a no-man’s land, leaving the photographer as a fugitive in a space that is a wasteland of unlit nothingness. Out of the darkness emerges a fiery chariot, a ghost tram that brings with it hope or at least an illumination of the present.
“Traveling Alone” The artist draws from Joseph Campbell, Jungian psychology and the notion of the ‘Hero’s Journey’. The hero witnessed in the image is standing on Three Rock Mountain. He is the solo traveller called to adventure. However certain tests or threshold struggles must be encountered in order for the hero to reintegrate and re-emerge as the transformed person who has weathered the storm.
“Dystopian Hope” looks at an augmented world using a burned out car as a metaphor for the cessation of fossil fuel use and current global industrial practices.The car is juxtaposed with the still intact cobblestones bringing to the fore the tenuous balance of manmade technological production and nature’s own products.
Bridging each exhibition space are screenings of photorealistic video. Commissioned poets include Catherine Ann Cullen Poetry Ireland’s inaugural Poet in Residence and American author Peter Money alongside other academics and poets.