A haunting new photography exhibition, ‘Within these walls’, that investigates the site of the former Maze prison and was captured by Co. Tyrone photographer Cathy Dempster, is due to be displayed at the Burnavon Arts and Cultural Centre, Cookstown from Monday 7th – 25th October.
While many of her images are inspired by quiet, rural Co Tyrone, Cathy also has developed a love for urban exploration, with her artist’s eye seeing the beauty and emotional responses abandoned and derelict buildings can evoke.
One of the most significant buildings of the Troubles, Cathy’s intention was to document what remains of the buildings at the site of the Maze prison. She says, “The memories, myths and prejudices that have become synonymous with this place are intriguing, almost seductive. If these walls could speak, would they share all their stories?”
This is certainly true of the images this exhibition which shows many new views of inside and outside the cell blocks, where the viewer can almost imagine the ghosts of the past lurking behind the doors, along the corridors or beside the barbed wire, waiting for a chance to talk.
With subjects as varied as the professional and personal history that brought her to where she is today, Cathy Dempster provides a unique range of skills and vision when it comes to photography. Ever since a camera was thrust into her hands at the age of 9, Cathy has documented the various paths she has taken in life, paths that have led to her becoming a professional photographer.
Cathy has a wide range of influences from the world of music, and has also developed as a sought after gig and band photographer. From live action through to promo shots, Cathy has captured musicians as wide ranging as Stiff Little Fingers, Horslips, Pat McManus, Hayseed Dixies, Seasick Steve, The Undertones, Mudbitch, LaFaro, and Ricky Warwick in various settings. Intimate portraits compete with full on action shots in her ever increasing portfolio of musical legends.
The exhibition will be on display in the First Floor Gallery, from Monday 7th to Friday 25th October. Free Admission. Open during normal Burnavon Arts and Cultural Centre hours, including from one hour before scheduled theatre performances.