Transforming Maze / Long Kesh Prison, Belfast (Conference)

Posted: Thursday, 09 March 2017

Transforming Maze / Long Kesh is a one-day conference about the difficulties in dealing with contentious heritage by focusing on the Maze / Long Kesh former prison site at The MAC, 10 Exchange St, Belfast.

Local and international speakers will discuss artistic, archaeological and ethnographic approaches to investigate contentious heritage such as the Maze / Long Kesh from a broader perspective. The conference addresses the special possibilities of Arts and Architecture to initiate a productive debate and new forms of engagement with such a site.

The conference takes place at the mid-point of the three-year art project Transforming Maze / Long Kesh. The project artistically investigates the material culture of this site, based on collaboration and dialogue. The artists Aisling O' Beirn and Martin Krenn work with participants such as ex-prisoners, ex-prison employees and ex-visitors from Maze / Long Kesh prison to produce an art project, which opens up multiple new perspectives from key individuals who have had direct contact with the site. The artists will conduct a series of workshops in which the participants' experience of the physical reality of the prison is central. The participants will be invited to create objects related to their personal experience and memory of the site using various materials and techniques that would have been used by pris- oners making objects whilst in jail. A traveling exhibition, displayed in various public locations, as well as a publication will show these objects together with copies/images of real artefacts from the jail. These exhibits will reveal physical traces of the material culture of Maze / Long Kesh.

Speakers Invited

Fred Caulfield
Martin Krenn
Aisling O'Beirn
Laura McAtackney
Klaus Schönberger
Tal Adler
Suzana Milevska
Christina Varvia
Mary Jane Jacob (Keynote)

Credits: The conference and the art project concerning the Maze / Long Kesh site, are both part of TRACES, a three-year project funded in 2016 by the European Commission as part of the Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation. ( With thanks to Development Arts and Culture, Ulster University Part of the Ulster University Festival of Art & Design ( 

Click here for further information on this event and for bookings.