Eye of the Storm
Seismology and archives are present in Siobhán McDonald’s new work, ‘Eye of the Storm’, which launches tomorrow at the Galway Arts Centre. ‘She explores the idea of studying ‘nature’ for this exhibition and employs geology as a language to conceive an understanding of time and our relationship to a constantly evolving environment, juxtaposing new artworks in poetic relation with historical and geological artefacts. Early 20th century Jesuit seismograms, from Dublin Institute of Advanced Studies (DIAS), The School of Cosmic Physics, and a series of newly realised works- drawings, paintings, sculpture, video and sound works - consider and reflect on the volcano, history, technology and mans’ recordings of events, as they interconnect with human experience through the physicality of the surrounding landmass.’
Irish Jesuits have influenced the field of seismology and astronomy in Ireland and abroad, particularly in the twentieth century. Men such as: Henry Gill - ‘Experiments with Spinning Tops to illustrate earthquake reactions’; William O’ Leary - established Mungret and Rathfarnham Observatories; Edward Pigot - pioneered seismology in observatories in China, Samoa, Tonga and founded Riverview Observatory, Sydney; Daniel O’ Connell - Director of the Vatican Observatory and the ‘O’ Connell Effect’, Noel Burke Gaffney - Riverview Observatory, Sydney, ‘The seismological and related aspects of the 1954 hydrogen boom explosion’, his brother Michael Walter who has an observatory named after him at Saint Mary’s University, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada and in Ireland, Richard Ingram and P.M Troddyn.