Connemara Landscape

James Coleman

Ballaghaderreen, Ireland, 1941
  • Date: 
  • Edition/serial number: 
    2/3 + 1 CA + 1 CTSA
  • Media description: 
    Installation of 35 mm slide projection
  • Category: 
  • Entry date: 
  • Observations: 
    "Connemara Landscape" (1980) is to be experienced as a projected image
  • Register number: 

We are not showing any images of this work by express wish of the artist. The work cannot be photographed, as it must only be seen as a projected image.

Connemara Landscape shows a single, static picture of, as the title says, a region of Ireland with a mythical past, currently a popular tourist destination. The projected slide shows an intricate yet simultaneously diagrammatic luminous line against a dark background, a silhouette that corresponds to neither a map nor a pictorial image of the place. It is rather that the artist is showing us a cryptic, allegorical picture, which is closer to a baroque compression of the world into a single image than any romantic vision of the landscape. This ambiguity, where the observer’s gaze is unsuccessful, and knowledge or recognition is impossible is typical of Coleman’s work, which forces the public to question what they see or reconstruct their point of view. This Irish artist is investigating the processes of perception, of representation of memory and of the reconstruction of ideas such as fiction through the recuperation of certain theatrical aspects. In this particular case, the reference to the context of his own country turns the work into a projected or ideological image of the territory, as an apparently static geographical reality, which is actually impossible to understand or interpret as a whole.

Lola Hinojosa