NYFA MARK Alumni
A Simple Grammar
2011
pigment prints on paper mounted on wood panels installed on a painted wall
dimensions variable
A Simple Grammar is a series created during a residency at Cill Rialaig, an artist retreat on the west coast of Ireland. The series consists of five parts, each constructed from photographs taken during my stay and structured as multi-panel narratives.

Like other of my recent and ongoing projects, A Simple Grammar examines a particular place through various lenses. In this series I include the land, culture and history of Cill Rialaig, a pre-famine village reconstructed from ruins and situated on a stark cliff above the North Atlantic. The photographs from my visit are combined to form inter-related pieces that tell stories of an Irish village through the eyes of an outsider. This, the title piece of the series, uses images of a porcelain milk tub found in the village Meeting House, lichen, images of stone ruins, and West Kerry landscape, threaded together with the text of a Gaelic language book from 1894, housed in the retreat library.

Each of the five narratives is meant to be viewed as a complete piece but using the repeat refrains of land, lichen and found domestic objects, each is also structured as part of the greater whole. Like a good Seanchai (storyteller) A Simple Grammar weaves an elliptical tale, revealing small details while telling the larger story of place.
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