Mariner is a response to the site of St Augustine’s graveyard in relation to its physical form and spiritual function. The site reflects the human need to address the transition from one plain of existence to another and to provide an interface for the contemplation of a movement between the two worlds of life and afterlife, or non-death. The title for this work references the NASA space missions of the early 1960s developed to probe and explore uncharted cosmic terrain. NASA in turn had appropriated the nautical term, mariner, to convey the impression of travelling great distances to remote lands
The installation consists of a series of thirteen cylindrical white LED tubes. Each light approximates to a gravestone in terms of size. The lights are organised in the form of a very slow fading transitory movement; a light-cycle of fluorescent signals positioned to highlight and connect selected stones and enhance a sense of the slow but constant shifting settlement of the graveyard. Mariner is designed to fade in and out and at the same time connect and emphasise particular areas of the graveyard, individual graves and overhanging trees. They are programmed to operate between dusk and midnight. This installation focuses on the physical structures present, provoking consideration of the site’s current sculptural presence and history, hinting at the potential for transcendence.
– Please note this is an outdoor event: the light work will be viewable from Palace Street, Society Street and the Derry Walls in the area adjacent to St Augustine’s Church & Heritage Site –
Mariner is a public commission by Art Arcadia on the site of Colmcille’s first monastery in Ireland. It is a celebration of the legacy of Colmcille as a uniting and shared figure who crosses communities, generations and nations.
This project has been partially supported though the Colmcille1500 Grant Scheme which is funded by the North West Development Fund and Creative Ireland, in conjunction with and supported by The Executive Office and The Irish Government. It has also been funded by The Community Foundation NI and Derry City & Strabane District Council as part of the Inside Out Festival.
Conor McFeely’s previous exhibitions include The British Art Show 5, Hayward Gallery London, touring Edinburgh, Southampton, Cardiff and Birmingham. Something Else, Contemporary Art from Ireland, touring Finland. Dogs Have No Religion Czech Museum of Fine Art, Prague. The Case of the Midwife Toad, The Douglas Hyde Gallery Dublin and Void Gallery Derry. Four cycles of the Weathermen projects were shown at NKD Dale Norway, 126 Gallery Galway, Franklin University Lugano Switzerland and The Golden Thread Gallery Belfast. The Prisoners Cinema, Corner College Collective Zurich and the Milan Art expo. His Pioneers project was shown as part of Tiny Deaths at CCA Derry. A further cycle of this project was shown at QSS in Belfast. As a member of the Void Gallery curatorial board he curated solo shows by Philip Napier, Andrei Molodkin and Andres Serrano. His project Mission Station was shown as part of Leviathan at MCAC Portadown. In 2021 he contributed to Maritime Poetics published by [transcript] Culture and Theory. Please visit Conor McFeely’s website for more info on his work: http://www.mentalimage.org.uk