A Romantic Interlude is the title given to a work that exists at different times as a structure, object, event and super 8mm film (all images here). This work is a response to my research into representations of the Leitrim landscape and emotional attachments to it, my own included. These representations, visual and textual, ranged from the Lovely Leitrim tourist board films of the 1980s to more current journalistic texts in papers such as The Irish Times. I’ve been particularly interested in recent migrations to the county: ‘Leitrim’ is a place, but becomes a kind of ideal when spoken about from afar. 



The building of this structure was an attempt to make something physical to represent this sense of aspiration, but also to emphasise the hard work involved. Part barn-raising, part folly, part idiosyncratic architecture, it exists as a sincere (if kitschy) expression of collective labour. Huge thanks to its builders: Ciara Barrett, Anna McLeod, Ruth Morrow, Peter Mutschler, Gareth Phelan, Bryonie Reid, Gordon Ryan and Craig Sands. A Romantic Interlude is being shown at Leitrim Sculpture Centre as one of 12 artist projects in New Sites, New Fields, an interdisplinary landscape research project.



*The ‘romantic interlude’ was the name given to John McGiven to slow sets played at the Rainbow Ballroom of Romance in Glenfarne. (This particular roadside structure is of interest to me not only because of its idiosyncratic appearance, but because of the different representations and fictions it inspired: William Trevor wrote the short story The Ballroom of Romance after driving past on the road to Enniskillen; this has been adapted into a film and recently into a play, restaged at the ballroom itself. See this post)