'Transit': in The Odd Collection, Pollen Studios and Gallery

Aisling O'Beirn (Photographer)

Research output: Non-textual formExhibition

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'Transit' is a video work produced as part of the body of work 'Another Day in Futile Battle Against the 2nd Law'. The work documents leafing through archival records of nightly observations by astronomers at Armagh Observatory. As well as noting the nightly positioning of the stars this ledger records other celestial events including the planetary transit of the sun. The ledger also faithfully records viewing conditions even when observations couldn't be made because of clouding out. Armagh Observatory has been recording meteorological data on a daily basis since July 1795. This work was facilitated by Armagh Observatory and Planetarium. The video work was shown in the exhibition ‘The Odd Collection’ at Pollen Studios and Gallery, Belfast

Transit, 1 min 10 sec, 2016, With special thanks to John McFarland of Armagh Observatory and Planetarium

The Odd Collection
Thursday 7th February
Time 6pm - 9pm
(Gallery also open Friday 8th February 12pm-3pm)

Cabinets of Curiosity, also known as ‘wonder rooms’ have displayed collections since at least the 1500’s. They have been used to categorise natural history objects, tell stories about the world and it’s history (sometimes not letting the truth get in the way of a good story) and served to establish a social ranking in society. The Odd Collection exhibition was inspired by the odd collection of favoured objects and the collection of odd objects that find their way into our homes and especially artists studios.
With invited artists, we will convert the Pollen Gallery into a 'wonder room', with a nod to the history of museum natural science collections and wink to the possibilities of undiscovered treasures.

Participating artists : Aimee Magee, Aisling Magee, Aisling O’Beirn, Alice Clark, Deirdre McKenna, Jayne Cherry, Jenny Davies, Johanna Leech, Kate Ritchie, Locky Morris, Nathan Crothers, Sharon Adams, SInéad Breathnach-Cashell, Zara Lyness
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationBelfast
PublisherPollen Studios and Gallery
Media of outputOnline
Publication statusPublished - 13 Sep 2016

Bibliographical note

Aisling O’Beirn, born 1968, is an artist based in Belfast and an Associate Lecturer in Sculpture at Ulster University. Her work is interdisciplinary and explores the relationship between politics and place, uncovering the tensions between disparate forms of official and unofficial information. She examines space and place as physical structures and political entities by making and animating forms relating to observed and theoretical structures being studied by contemporary astronomers and physicists. Her work also questions how people process and understand both scientific and political developments. Her work takes various forms, including sculpture, installation, animations and site-specific projects depending on the context. Dialogue is key to her practice, which has been facilitated by Armagh Observatory, Dunsink Observatory and The Centre for Astronomy NUIG, Galway. O’Beirn has exhibited nationally and internationally. She was included in Northern Ireland’s first participation in the 51st Venice Biennale and was shortlisted for the MAC International prize in 2018. Her work manifests variously as sculpture, installation, animation and site-specific projects.


  • Transit
  • Contemporary Art
  • Astronomy
  • Armagh Observatory


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