Aftermath, an exhibition of photography, film, and music that looks at The Troubles, has been officially opened by Dr Maurice Hayes at the County Museum Dundalk.
It brings together people directly affected by the trauma. They can share their experiences through, music, film and photography.
Filmmaker and Aftermath director Laurence McKeown, along with commissioned photographer Anthony Haughey, have worked closely with the participants to produce a major touring exhibition and programme of curated events.
A wide range of people from both sides of the border attended the opening. they included Alan Brecknell, whose father, Trevor, was shot dead in a public house in south Armagh on 19 December 1975. Alan now works for the Pat Finucane Centre and is also a member of the Northern Ireland Victims and Survivors Forum.
Alan’s father was killed on the same night that Dundalk was rocked by a car bomb, killing two men and injuring many. The Aftermath exhibition features Margaret English, daughter of Hugh Watters who, along with Jack Rooney, was killed in the 1975 Dundalk Bombing on Crowe Street.
In 1969, the largest evacuation of refugees since World War II took place in Ireland as thousands of people fled across the border to escape the unfolding conflict in Northern Ireland. In subsequent years, the border counties continued to be heavily impacted – many people were injured or killed in bombings and shootings while others were imprisoned or displaced.
In the mid-1990s, increasing political and economic stability created the conditions for a new demographic shift with the arrival of asylum seekers and refugees from all over the world. These people often experienced the same fears and anxieties as their counterparts from the North a generation earlier. They also encountered similar suspicions and prejudices on arrival in their new homes.
Aftermath sets out to explore the hidden histories, unresolved antagonisms, and personal hopes and dreams.
The Aftermath exhibition will run at the County Museum until 25 October. Opening hours are Tuesday–Saturday, 10am – 5pm. Admission free.