Gail Ritchie Contemporary Art
The stones in the foreground of the image above are known locally as a dolmen, and it sits within a circular earthwork - or henge - called the Giant's Ring. It is one of Ireland's oldest monuments, circa 5, 000 years old, and therefore it predates the pyramids at Giza. What we see today are the inner remains of the tomb and not its outer covering, nor the other tombs that were said to surround it. I have been thinking a lot recently about the oppositions of inner/outer and visible/invisible. Bachelard's Poetics of Space has helped me think about these things in interesting ways. Bachelard talks about the interface of oppositions by drawing our attention to what is held in tension between polarities and how the dialectical relationship between inner/outer is intimate and subject to change, or reversal. The point at which these polarities come together - the border line - is, according to Bechelard, painful to both sides. To avoid this pain, in a move from poetry to physics, we might consider that (after Barad, 2014) there are no boundaries, as "there is no absolute outside ; the outside is already inside". As I continue to develop ideas for a future memorial, I ask myself what the relationship between the visible and invisible will be, and how will it enable polarities to come together there in ways which are not painful to either side. How can I avoid absolutes?
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