'Churches', by Sylvia Grace Borda

Sylvia Grace Borda
20th January - 2nd March 2012
Belfast Exposed, Belfast

[taken from BelfastExposed.org]... Sylvia Grace Borda is interested in exploring the architectural legacy of Modernism in Northern Ireland and has made a photographic survey of its modernist churches. Borda spent 2 years journeying through Northern Ireland, seeking out and photographing its churches. The result is an extensive photographic typology, which forms a contemporary portrait of Northern Ireland, and its unchronicled Modernist past.

Modernist civic buildings in Northern Ireland have been characteristically imposing, adopting brutalist architectural strategies. Many of its modernist churches however have aspired to be ethereal and open. These designs reflected the Modernist 1960s idea that architecture had a potential, through spatial openness, to improve social and political lives. Modernist churches employed architectural designs that did not privilege one particular faith over another. It is almost impossible to examine the structural form of many churches and readily distinguish the
associated faith.

Churches is an exhibition in 3 parts. At the front of the gallery is a display cabinet containing a series of ceramic objects loaned from antique shops and official Government collections in Northern Ireland. The traditional "souvenir plate" was popular as a token of remembrance, and was often associated with travel and the depiction of picturesque locales. The main gallery space hosts an installation of photo-printed, ceramic plates, entitled "Coming to the Table" and a video projection of over 100 unnamed modernist churches from across Northern Ireland.


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