Monday, July 23, 2012

New exhibition to feature photos of Newgrange and Boyne Valley monuments

The major historical landmarks of the Boyne Valley - along with a few lesser known ones - will feature in an evocative new exhibition by accomplished local photographer Pat Burns opening next week in Drogheda.

Swans on the Boyne in front of Newgrange, by Pat Burns.
The exhibition of highly atmospheric black and white prints is the result of five years of meticulous observation and many pre-dawn forays to catch the magical early morning light.

The exhibition, at the Abbey Gallery in Dominic Street, will feature rich moody images of Newgrange, the Hill of Slane, Monasterboice, Mellifont, Dunmoe Castle, Bective Abbey, Tara, Trim Castle, the cairns at Loughcrew and the standing stones at Baltray.

“For over 5,000 years, builders have left their mark in wonderful inscribed stone buildings and monuments across this ancient and historical countryside. It is a rich and royal landscape, home to high kings and druids, Christian saints, monks and monasteries,” says Pat, who hails from Laytown.

“The connecting thread in the landscape is the River Boyne from which the Valley takes its name.”

“The exhibition is an attempt to capture in black and white photographic images not only the beauty of the landscape of the Boyne Valley, but also the power, sense of mystery and atmosphere that still inhabits the place.”

“There's something palpable that still seems to cling to and live on in the castle ruins, in the high crosses and monasteries, the trees, standing stones, ancient mounds and along the river Boyne itself.”

Adds Pat: “The exhibition is not meant to be an in depth pictorial record of the Boyne Valley. Rather it is a personal visual homage to this place of myth, mystery and beauty.”

Pat is a self-taught photographer with a particular interest in documentary and landscape work. He has recorded many aspects of life and community in Laytown where he has lived for almost thirty years.

The exhibition will be opened by Anthony Murphy, co-author of Island Of The Setting Sun: In Search of Ireland's Ancient Astronomers, on Thursday July 26 at 7.30pm.

See more pictures at Mythical Ireland.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

New book on Newgrange by Anthony Murphy

I am currently working on a new book about Ireland's most famous monument. The book, called 'Newgrange - Monument to Immortality', will be published by The Liffey Press in the autumn.

This new work explores Newgrange and its mysteries from many aspects and disciplines, including archaeology, astronomy and spirituality, and encompasses a broad-sweeping and philosophical examination of the big questions about Ireland's most famous monument. The book will contain lots of new colour photographs - none of which have been published before in any other book or on any website. These include photos from inside the passage and chamber on the winter solstice, when the sun shines into the heart of the monument.

A new blog site has been set up about the Newgrange book which can be found here.