Ciarán Walsh


Book, 17 x 11 cm, 96 p., language : English, publisher : Self-published, ISBN : N/A.
Materials: ink, paper

Collection: Collection M HKA, Antwerp (Inv. no. B 2029/94).

Literary synopsis

An unnamed narrator recalls his time working at an institution with the Subject, a recent participant in an extreme sleep experiment that took place in a sealed-off cave, and which was commissioned in advance of the first manned space travel mission to a neighbouring planet. As the narrator’s encounter evolves, we learn of the Subject’s claim that during his time in the cave he experienced a quasi-mystical translocation to perplexing secondary location, a dark labyrinth populated by strange and confusing images and figures. Over the course of the book, political rumours and hints of conspiracy collect to undermine the narrator’s own understanding of the story he has found himself in.

Relation of the novel to the artist’s practice

The novella represents the end point of a period of artistic research into ideas of the Uncanny that relate to the space and dramaturgy of European ethnographic museums. The narrative and writing style of the novella develops my artistic strategies of communication breakdown, failure and interruption, and explores further ongoing themes of post-colonialism, institutional critique (specifically of the Museum), time travel, alienation before the Object, Otherness, and the functions of memory. The novella is understood as an autonomous artwork, an edition, which stands in relation to both the general body of research, and the other produced artworks from the research period.

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