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Institute of Censorship: Belfast exposed

Part 1 Project 2015
Ryan Ortiz
Norwich University of the Arts Norwich UK
Unreliable Witnesses - Alternative Truth

With the application of censorship, news and most current affairs coverage of Northern Ireland during the Troubles lacked any historical depth, and failed to give an airing to the roots of the crises, which left the city of Belfast’s image shrouded with dissent, politics and violence. However, this image of the city was countered by the local community whom, either out of a sense of the integrity of documenting the truth or the importance of an alternative politics, revealed the neglected narratives of Belfast’s everyday citizens.

In the proposal, processes of censorship such as voice silencing, scene editing, news cutting and constant surveillance are used as a spatial strategy to construct an architectural experience, creating an awareness of the effects of censorship on the perception of the city. At the same time, this architectural ‘body' provides sequences of spaces which reveal hidden stories, expanding one's understanding of Belfast. By presenting both sides of the story in one place, while offering spaces for reflection and mediation, the occupants and visitors are given the freedom to create their own conclusion of how they perceive the city today.

Ryan Ortiz


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