Susan Hughes: Stones from a Gentle Place

20 Jan-16 Mar 2024
PV 20 Jan 2024, 7-9pm

CCA Derry~Londonderry
Derry~Londonderry BT48 6RG


CCA Derry~Londonderry are delighted to present a solo show by Belfast-based artist Susan Hughes, consisting of new and existing work inspired by the land, sea and stories of North West Ireland.

Susan’s practice combines video, audio, sculpture and installation to examine the mechanics and significance of storytelling in Irish culture. The exhibition follows the artists’ encounter with bioluminescence while swimming in the sea at night, and her subsequent observation of how humans throughout history have made sense of natural phenomena, the stories associated with such occurrences, and the physical and cognitive effects on the body.

Susan’s research has expanded beyond bioluminescence (microscopic plankton ignited by movement) to fluorescent geology and Will ‘o the Wisp (phosphorescence caused by plants decaying in boggy ground). These phenomena are otherworldly, seemingly synthetic in their brilliance, independent combustion and neon colours. Alongside this, Susan has travelled across Ireland, connecting with archivists, storytellers, musicians and mariners, gathering folklore related to this natural phenomena in the landscape. 

In addition, the gallery will be used as a generative space, bringing aspects of Susan’s studio to CCA and presenting a new body of work in progress.

Stones from a Gentle Place will be accompanied by a programme of public events and schools programme, including Tunes from a Gentle Place, a fiddle performance into the supernatural folklore of south west Donegal by Susan, on Saturday 2 March 2023.