The 8th Letter of the Alphabet

Land, territory, and colours are crucial in the construction of identity in Northern Ireland.  The Norther Irish people are distinctly aware of the territories that surround them and the markers and symbols that define those boundaries. The color of an object depends on how your eyes perceive it, however. What happens when all these very definitive symbols are placed into a space where their color becomes uncertain? Colour and light used together can cause elements of a photograph to change. The two communities in Northern Ireland live in the same ‘objective’, physically defined world, yet their subjective experience can be very different. The 8th Letter of the Alphabet explores the subjective perception of a divided community through the manipulation of colour and light.

The 1998 signing of the Good Friday Agreement officially marked the end of the armed conflict in Northern Ireland that began in 1969. The ongoing transformation to a more peaceful society has been widely regarded as a successful example of global peacebuilding and conflict transformation. Despite a much-improved security situation since 1998, full implementation of the peace accord has been challenging. Although many aspects of the Good Friday Agreement have been completed, tension and distrust persist between the two divided communities.