They Go Out in Joy
They Go Out in Joy (2015), is a feature-film-length series of 114 videos derived from photographs of Irish emigrants. The one-to-two minute videos will be performed by different actors and viewed in any order online. The project explores how memory is mapped forward as narrative expectation in communities that are geographically cohesive, and those that are not. The photographs were taken just before each person's departure from Cobh, Ireland, (the major port of Irish emigration) in the 1920s. The 114 individuals on whom the videos are based are featured in a collection of portrait photographs held in the private collection of a Cobh resident, whose parents operated a boardinghouse where the emigrants stayed just prior to their departure, and according to long tradition each left their photo with the proprietors. All the background locations featured in the videos show Cobh itself, filmed in residence there at Sirius Art Centre in 2013.