Changing Tracks

Newport 'Steam Train' Installation Xevi Bayona Camo
Author's Collection

Arts Installations 2014

This arts Project was a partnership project of Mayo County Council’s International Public Art Programme in collaboration with Northamptonshire County Council plus Counsortium Transversal Cultural Action Network in Catalonia.  It was a contemporary visual plus digital art project that facilitated the creation of nine new temporary outdoor artworks in three countries: (three in each participating region; one artwork by each artist) by three international artists as part of the European Union’s Culture Programme 2007 – 2013.  The artworks responded to former railway lines, their heritage with local environment in Northamptonshire (UK), Mayo (IE) & Catalonia (CAT).  The project also examined how the change of use has now impacted on local economies or lifestyles.  In each instance they were situated on or adjacent to disused railway lines now used as walking or cycle paths.  The nine artworks remained in-situ until the end of summer 2014.  The Irish edition of the project was situated along the Great Western Greenway – the former railway connecting Westport to Achill.  The three Artists were Noah Rose with The Museum of Interconnected Events, Aideen Barry’s project was titled ‘Strange Terrain while Xevi Bayona Camó’s ‘Smoke Train’ was situated on the Viaduct in Newport.  One of the main aims of the project was to achieve an aim to increase public assess among existing walkers, runners, cyclists or recreational or heritage groups.  The Irish edition of ‘Changing Tracks’ was launched in Westport, Co. Mayo, on 12th July 2014 by Director of the Abbey Senator Fiach Mac Conghail.  It was followed by a brief walking tour of the artworks in Westport prior to a bus tour of several artworks further along the Greenway.  Launches also took place in Tortosa on 30th May, in Girona & Olot on the 14th June then in Northamptonshire on 15th August.  A Seminar was held in GMIT in Castlebar on 25th / 26th September that same year. During the Seminar Art Critic Gemma Tipton provided an independent reflection of the Changing Tracks’ project in Mayo with a Q & A session plus an Artists case study.  The event was followed by a Tour of all Artworks. [i]

County Mayo Art Installations

‘The Museum of Interconnected Events’

Noah Rose’s sculptural installation was situated along the Greenways.  The small museums comprised a series of ‘event cabinets’ clad with a ‘shell’ of local materials, and contained a variety of artefacts, that included salvaged objects sourced locally.  These included archival photographs with other documents that related to the impact of particular railways or their surroundings, also local species diversity along with local legends or cultural traditions.  When Noah Rose conducted a large body of research in the three regions, he found curious links between the countries illustrated in the collections.  The cabinets collections explore themes such as migration and exile, hidden personal histories of journeys, transformation of raw materials, the livelihoods of local people, the persistence of memory and the connection between language and cultural identity. [ii]  His project included the exploration of various materials, both for their qualities or sense of malleability, cultural resonance, historic significance to the place they came from, their deeper meaning to the people who worked with them on several traditions with which they are associated.  He employed that method during 2014 with his projects for ‘Changing Tracks.’  His Cabinets included songs or poems that related to micro – histories as he explored the similar themes of a common European heritage.  He stated: ‘I researched both the contents and also the different materials that comprised the outer ‘shell’ of each cabinet.  These included: natural cork and ceramic fruits from Catalunya, aluminium railway components from Northamptonshire.  Each piece of material was chosen for their aesthetic and material qualities.  Also for some aspect of historical significance relating to their production or the industries which gave rise to them and which intertwined with the communities of people that made their living from working with them.’ (Cronagallagher) [iii]  His Specialty is the creation of site – specific works for public spaces, as he seeks out the invisible threads to bring aspects of a place together through culture or historic settings. [iv]

This site has an image of the Mulrany Cabinet: http://noahrose.net/

This video is an excellent coverage of Noah Rose’s Cabinets: https://vimeo.com/106309304

His ‘Museum of Interconnected Things’ can be seen at; https://vimeo.com/106309304

(One of his Cabinets along Westport Greenway displayed several of my Father’s artefacts pertaining to the Spanish Civil War along with a poem of mine.)

‘Strange Terrain’

Aideen Barry’s Changing Tracts project ‘Strange Terrain’ was penned by Gemma Tipton in an Irish Times article dated 26th July 2014.  It portrayed Aideen Barry as ‘An artist travelling under her own steam’ where she created Animation videos (available on mobile phone via QR code) plus a limited – edition book of same name inspired by Lilias Campbell Davidson. (26th July 2014) [v]  Aideen Barry’s Installations, also her videos were inspired by the 19th Century Travel Writer / Adventurer Lilias Campbell Davidson’s publication ‘Hints for Lady Travelers at home and abroad.’1889  The Folly at Westport Convent, the Old Water Tower at the back of the Mulrany Hotel were the chosen sites for her exhibitions or installations.  Her limited – edition interactive publication ‘Strange Terrain’ are accessed by VR code within the book.  [vi]  Aideen Barry presented thirty stop – motion videos that projected at intervals during the cycling / walking tracts, in an architectural folly plus in a water tower. [vii]  Aideen Barry’s means of expression are interchangeable whether in performance, film, animation, drawing, sculpture or installations. [viii]

One may view her works at this link: www.aideenbarry.com

‘Steam Train’

Xevi Bayona Camó the Catalayan Artist & Architect is well known for his spectacular multimedia installations.  He applies a range of honed creative skills from architecture to visual art, from designs to photography to deliver nurtured artistic concepts.  Features of his works are audience interaction plus lots of lighting while he references the past influence of the railways.  Xevi Bayona Camó’s Mayo project is an Installation of a large scale ‘Steam Train’ located at the Viaduct in Newport.  He projected Steam through the art piece with an addition of lights. [ix]

His images may be viewed at https://www.instagram.com/xevi_bayona/

Footnotes

There are utube videos or vitmos of Changing Tracks available.

These sites host PDF’s of ‘Changing Tracks’

http://www.mayococo.ie/en/media/Media,25163,en.pdf

 http://www.mayococo.ie/en/media/Media,24972,en.pdf

For more information please view this site: https://www.changingtracks.eu/

One may view the amazing artwork in this video: https://vimeo.com/105156823

Information is available at this link: http://www.mayococo.ie/en/Services/ArtsOffice/ArtsNews/StoryIfNoFilesToUpload,24971,en.aspx

A photo of the three artists may be viewed at this Link: https://www.bbc.com/news/

Bibliography

[i] European Public Art Project (http://www.mayococo.ie/en/media/Media,25163,en.pdf) [assessed 4th September 2018]

[ii] Noah Rose (www.noahrose.co.uk ) [assessed 4th September 2018]

[iii] Noah Rose – Sculpture (https://fiveglensfestival.wordpress.com/2016/06/20/sculptor-noah-rose/) [assessed 8th September 2018]

[iv] Noah Rose Artist (www.noahrosee.co.uk ) [assessed 8th September 2018]

[v] Aideen Barry (https://www.irishtimes.com/culture/art-and-design/aideen-barry-an-artist-travelling-under-her-own-steam-1.1878150 ) [assessed 9th September 2018]

[vi] Arts Office MCC (http://www.mayococo.ie/en/Services/ArtsOffice/ArtsNews/) [assessed 9th September 2018]

[vii] Changing Tracks (https://www.changingtracks.eu/ ) [assessed 9th September 2018]

[viii] European Public Art Project (http://www.mayococo.ie/en/media/Media,25163,en.pdf) [assessed 4th September 2018]

[ix] European Public Art Project (http://www.mayococo.ie/en/media/Media,25163,en.pdf) [assessed 4th September 2018]

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