Tuesday, October 1, 2013

SEPIL Corrib Commission 002 - Traveling New Roads.

On my immediate arrival to Bellmullet for my first site visit, on Monday July 29th 2013, I was compelled to write, desperately wanting to record the experiences of my first journey from my studio in the heart of the Burren, County Clare, to the vast expanses of north County Mayo. I had wished I had a dictaphone with me all the way, but the memories of the journey were still fresh in my experience.

Sometime after leaving my studio in Ballyvaughan I began to miss the soft Burren landscape, feeling lost on roads until I entered County Mayo. Then the world opened up again!

On a regional road towards Bellacorrick, (which seemed to go on forever) all twentynine kilometers of it! I thought more philosophically about 'the road ahead', and how when traveling new roads you just trust that the road will unfold ahead of you presenting you with the next piece of the journey and so on, eventually bringing you to your intended destination. In a way this feeling extends through my life as an artist, always trusting that the next brush stroke or mark will lead on to further places yet undiscovered - a new destination.

This winding road, so beautiful with the Glenamoy river on my left, made me think of my great grandfather Daddy Jim Hearns (b.1850), and his brother Frank, the famous fishermen. They surely must have fished this pristine river.

Then I meet a lake, wild and windblown. I continued to snake along this sheltered road catching glimpses of mountains which seemed close by. And then out, onto the vast bog plains which stretched away on all sides, and then rose up into unreachable heights out of nowhere. 

I looked at this wild and untamed landscape, contemplating the job that lay ahead of me. A feeling of foreboding, something sinister rose up in me, knowing of the opposition and history of this project and of some of the more contentious issues, but perhaps that was heightened by the recording from Conception des lumières by Anne Dutoya which was playing ominously that moment on RTE Lyric FM!

I continued on, acknowledging several farmers who worked tirelessly on fences at the side of the road. I reminded myself to be aware and conscious of the communities here and their important traditions. 

These small bog roads rose and fell, knocking out any kinks in the spin. It was a real adventure as I had never taken this road before. And t
hen I was there, having entered the Gaeltacht and the larger Erris area.

Since that journey I have had two site visits, inductions and safety training and had the opportunity to visit the sites at Aughoose, Glengad and a walk from the Leenamore River Crossing along the entire Wayleave. 

I have also taken the time to explore sections of the vast and stunning landscape around the Barony of Erris with it's extraordinary natural beauty,  sandy beaches and sea cliffs carved by the atlantic. The area covers around two hundred and ten thousand acres!

The works I have began to date includes notebook sketches and larger studies in oil on canvas. I am making great progress and have a number of strong visual references that I am working with currently.

I look forward now to my next site visit where I am planning to compose paintings at the Terminal at Bellinaboy, progressing this body of work further. 
At that stage, I believe, I will have a very good idea of how the overall project might unfold and what I will be interested to record in paint.

Please do pop your email address into the 'subscribe' feature on this Blog to receive updates on this project, my work, and future exhibitions.

Web: www.richardhearns.com 
Blog: www.richardhearnspaintings.blogspot.com

Email: info@richardhearns.com

Phone: + 353 (0)86 216 1135.

No comments: