Brendan’s Isle

2010

 Brendan’s Isle (Works)

Duration: 6 min. 52 sec.
1 mp3 or CD player, 1 headphone

English and German language versions

This short sound piece recalls an ancient journey, fantastical and wondrous, which was recorded in a very old poem. The starting point for this piece was one of the earliest surviving versions of this poem, written in Old Dutch. This is the story of Brendan, an Irish monk who lived on the west coast of Ireland in the sixth century.

Listening through headphones, one can step into this mythical world and become immersed in this oceanic journey. Braving bitter cold and treacherous conditions Brendan undertook a dangerous sea journey in search of an island, subsequently known as Brendan’s Isle, reputed to be nothing less than paradise on earth. This island features on many early maps, although its exact location is never fixed. Columbus went in search for it on his way to America, it’s quest perhaps an allegory for the invisible and the sublime.

courtesy the artist and Frith Street Gallery, London

Credits

English version spoken by Fiona Tan
German version spoken by Inge Krichau Sadowsky