Abandoned brings together for the first time photographs depicting uninhabited homes, and the objects scattered within, taken in Scotland’s Western Isles by Adrian Tyler and Ireland’s County Donegal by Jill Quigley. For nearly 300 years the ruin has served as a poetic symbol of the transience of life and the unrelenting passage of time. Tyler and Quigley both engage with the rural domestic ruin in a manner that not only documents the past but also revitalises them in relation to the present and reinvents them with the photographer’s own presence.
Adrian Tyler’s ‘Dust to Dust ‘is comprised of photographs made of deserted dwellings in the Outer Hebrides and Orkney and still lifes of disintegrating bibles found in similar environs. Due to topography and depopulation the Scottish islands have an unusually high number of abandoned and derelict houses. In 2004-2005, using Ordnance Survey maps, Tyler methodically travelled throughout the isles producing an extensive archive of images. The photographs show damaged furnishings, clothing, cooking implements, peeling wallpapers, artworks and piles of books—hints of the lives that the buildings once sheltered, revealing the fragility of existence. The photographs of worn and weathered bibles, question the power of both stories and belief systems to protect from such a reality, the onslaught of time and change. The photographs speak to the lives and way of life that is no longer as well as socio-economic changes that have occurred in remote communities.
‘Cottages of Quigley’s Point’ focuses on rural dwellings in a state of ruin located near Jill Quigley’s childhood home in Donegal, Ireland. Rather than viewing these interiors as static artefacts that contain purely nostalgic or romantic associations with the past, Quigley staged playful interventions. She transformed the redundant interiors with colourful paintings, sculptures, installations and performance, engaging her own creativity whilst remaining in dialogue with the local history and heritage the buildings represent.
“The addition of bright colours, objects and movement situates the interiors within the present. The intention is to emphasise my presence in that time and place, apply a fresh and playful approach to familiar subject matter, and subvert wistful readings of a disappearing way of life.” -Jill Quigley
“Jill Quigley and Adrain Tyler made a perfect pair to share the Martin Parr Foundation gallery space. This is the first time that their work will be displayed together in dialogue. Although they have very different modes of working, we think the contrast between them is enlightening and a perfect chance to highlight some of the work in the Martin Parr Foundation collection too.” – Martin Parr
Adrian Tyler (b 1963) is a London born self-taught photographer who is currently based in Madrid. His personal projects explore biographical, environmental and political issues and much of this work examines the transient nature of time and obstacles that distract us from our reality. His work has been exhibited internationally and he has been commissioned by Greenpeace, Museo Nacional del Prado and Gehry Partners amongst others. His work has been the included in numerous international exhibitions and much of his photographic archive is held in the Martin Parr Foundation.
Jill Quigley (b. 1981) was born in County Donegal and is currently based in Belfast. She completed an MFA in Photography at Ulster University in 2014, having previously studied Art History at Trinity College, Dublin. Her work has been exhibited internationally and has been the focus of solo exhibitions at Belfast Exposed and Seen Fifteen in London. Quigley was the recipient of the Jill Todd Award in 2018, the ESPY Student Prize June and the Outstanding Student Award, Royal Ulster Academy of the Arts in 2014.
Adrian Tyler & Jill Quigley : Abandoned
28 September – 22 December 2023
Martin Parr Foundation
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