BrainWaves

A Festival Young Artist Commission

Artist: Susan Hughes

31 January – 6 February 2022 • Linen Hall Library (window terrace exterior)

To mark St. Bridgid’s day, the young Belfast artist Susan Hughes will create an abstract, moving image, inspired by the quote from the writer Karl One Knausgaard (see below) when he viewed a living brain through the scopes of the neurosurgeon Henry Marsh.  The work, installed at the front exterior of the Linen Hall Library, symbolises the wealth of knowledge and creativity that lies within the building.

I felt as if I were standing on the top of a mountain, gazing out over a plain, covered by long, meandering rivers.  On the horizon, more mountains rose up, between them there were valleys and one of the valleys was covered by an enormous white glacier.  Everything gleamed and glittered.  It was as if I had been transported to another world, another part of the universe.  One river was purple, the others were dark red, and the landscape they coursed through was full of unfamiliar colours.  But it was the glacier that held my gaze the longest.  It lay like a plateau above the valley, sharply white, like mountain snow on a sunny day.  Suddenly a wave of red rose up and washed across the white surface.  I had never seen anything quite as beautiful, and when I straightened up and moved aside to make room for the doctor, for a moment my eyes were glazed with tears.

Susan Hughes is from Belfast. She has completed many artist residencies in Ireland and Scandinavia and graduated in 2021 from the University of Ulster receiving the Centre for Contemporary Art (Derry) and Platform Arts (Belfast) graduate awards and was long listed for the Royal Dublin Society graduate award.