Merging Beauty with the Beast

My fondness for industrial spaces overlaid by beautiful women from another era.

The devil is always lurking

I’m particularly drawn to cement factories with their monstrous tubes and chimneys jutting out against the landscape. I find them beautiful in their ugliness.

During my college years in Limerick I would often stroll down the Dock Road to get closer to the Irish Cement factory, a humming monster  which seemed to grow out of the ground. Clanking away noisily in its ghostly manner and never a soul to be seen. As if it was in control of itself. Visiting it recently I found it abandoned and overgrown with weeds, now more beautiful than ever as it truly merges with the land.

Irish Cement have another factory in County Meath which is on the way to my sister’s house. It seems so surreal set in such a beautiful rural landscape. I’ve taken many photographs of this factory but my favourite view is through this beautiful gateway flagged by two stone pillars. At the far side of the gateway there are arching trees framing the factory and a long winding path which seems to lead you there. It looks like some sort of fairy tale castle down the end of the tarmacadam road. Like a futuristic  Emerald City from Wizard of Oz.

  • Castle Gates
  • The factory through the arch

My double exposures layer photographs of women from the silent movie era over the cement factory creating new fictitious stories. Their faces hovering like spectres over the land imaging a connection with this place. The arch of the trees protects and encloses them in this enclave.