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Between the Lines: A thesis driven by line as evidenced in landscape, process, and technique

Part 2 Project 2014
Megan White
Queen's University Belfast UK
The Smokehouse and the Antrim Coast Road

Between the lines; a thesis driven by line as evidenced in landscape, process, and technique.

384.6km the first line drawn; the Antrim Coast Road, Northern Ireland. Walk, drive or cycle this iconic route, one is caught by the abandoned ruins of Glenarm Whiting Mill and Quarry, the only objects for miles that directly interfere with this unabashed road that cuts through the wild Antrim Glens. The site embodies sadness; the town itself once fuelled by the mill appears to have lost its spirit, extinguished with the fires, slowly surrendering to the unforgiving landscape. The Glenarm Organic Salmon company cast their nets a stone throw away from the abandoned Quarry; yet process their produce further down the line, towards Donegal. Salmon, like most fish can be sold; fresh, frozen, whole, filleted and smoked but it is also one of few fish that can be cold smoked. It was the process of smoking that seemed to resonate with the topography of the abandoned Quarry. A brutal process that left bold traces in the landscape, deep striations as it was excavated in sheets and once this force seized to continue it left sheltered volumes; a poetic platform in which to drape fillets to dry in the salty breeze and brought forth an image of salmon speckling this rough white lime surface of the glens, a new home for Glenarm Smoked Salmon.

Black linear drawings of this evolving quarry line and rock face became an obsession that fuelled the project. The smokehouse themselves played on the original verticality of the old limestone kilns. Parallels were drawn between the two processes, extrapolating the idea of using cavity walls to manipulate the linear movement of smoke, which permitted the rooms to stack into chimneys that could nestle into this readapted landscape and connect to the limestone face via a series of staircases and walkways that cling like limpets to the unspoiled rock face.

Upon reflection the thesis truly became an exploration into a now very apparent stylistic approach to drawing.

Megan White


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