Absent present

21st January 2005. Catalyst Arts Gallery, Belfast, Northern Ireland. 30 minutes


I sent invitations to all politicians in Belfast City Hall.
I only got one response to state that due to prior commitments he was unable to make it.

Following on from the stalled political process I did a piece of work called Absent-Present. I used a table, six seats; six table settings with the initial of each of the six counties within Northern Ireland shown on six glasses.  In addition I had six copies of the Good Friday Agreement on the table this was all sitting on a circular piece of Northern Irish turf.
The other three Ulster counties were depicted on an additional three glasses each with an initial shown of that county placed on a location separate from the table. While this was taking place I played an audio recording of local politicians having a debate that developed into a shouting match. I during this carried out live actions.
The performance was once again carried out to open dialogue based on mutual respect which unfortunately at this juncture was lacking.

Related work:
Make it matter
Lost lives
Healing and soothing without dialogue


Read Good Friday Agreement
Agreement reached in the multi-party negotiations (10 April 1998)

1. Declaration of Support
2. Constitutional Issues
Annex A: Draft Clauses/Schedules for Incorporation in British
Annex B: Irish Government Draft Legislation
3. Strand One: 
Democratic Institutions in Northern Ireland
4. Strand Two:
North/South Ministerial Council
5. Strand Three:
British – Irish Council
British – Irish Intergovernmental Conference
6. Rights, Safeguards and Equality of Opportunity
Human Rights
United Kingdom Legislation
New Institutions in Northern Ireland
Comparable Steps by the Irish Government
A Joint Committee
Reconciliation and Victims of Violence
Economic, Social and Cultural Issues
7. Decommissioning
8. Security 
9. Policing and Justice
Annex A: Commission on Policing for Northern Ireland
Annex B: Review of the Criminal Justice System
10. Prisoners 
11. Validation, Implementation and Review 
Validation and Implementation
Review Procedures Following Implementation

ANNEX: Agreement between the Government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and the Government of Ireland.