29 September 2014

Mapping a Railway's Ghost

Once a train line ran from Enniskillen, crossed the border at Belcoo-Blacklion and went on to Silgo. It closed in 1957 but traces of the route can still be seen; raised embankments; sidings; bridges. The artist Séamus Dunbar walked the route and developed an interesting, interactive and very fitting way of presenting his journey. The viewer scrolls through the map, seeing what Dunbar saw and in the order he saw it. The journey is described in ink drawings on a piece of paper several metres long. It is wound up inside the device.

Thanks to Alan Meban for the video

By having the viewer scroll through the journey Dunbar has created a temporal as well as a spatial experience, with fingers taking the place of feet. As new vistas open up ahead, the ground already traversed slips out of sight behind, just like walking.

Dunbar has titled the piece Isolarion 1.