Film-maker Bob Quinn donates archive of 40 years to library at NUIG


FILM-MAKER AND photographer Bob Quinn has donated a 40-year archive of images of Connemara to NUI Galway’s library.

The archive comprises some 25,000 photographic negatives – a sample of which are also on display for a month at Galway City Museum, along with his film work.

Mr Quinn, a member of Aosdána, is best known for his films Poitín(1977), Budawanny(1987) and Caoineadh Airt Uí Laoghaire(1974), along with his challenging theory questioning Ireland’s “Celtic” origins in The Atlantean Trilogy(1980-84).

The exhibition, entitled Conamara 1970-2010; Fís 40 Bliain – Forty Years Imagine!, combines a comprehensive selection of images from his extensive archive, according to Breandán Ó hEaghra of the Galway City Museum.

“The exhibition gives a great snapshot of the changing face of Connemara over the past 40 years, recalling the great events, festivals and people of the area,” Mr Ó hEaghra says.

Among the images on display are individuals such as the late playwright Johnny Chóil Mhaidhc photographed for Quinn’s 1997 publication for Cló Iar-Chonnachta,entitled Conamara: An Tír Aineoil: The Unknown Countrywith text by Liam Mac Con Iomaire.

Born in Dublin 1935, the film-maker, writer and photographer has produced more than 100 works of film, including drama, documentary and experimental work for his company, Cinegael.

Films include Cloch(1975), Self-portrait with Red Car (1976), Listen (1978), The Family (1979), Pobal in London, Boston, Germany (1988-90), The Bishop Story (1993), The Conamaras in Minnesota (1996), Navigatio (1998), It Must be Done Right (1999), The Emigrant’s Dance (2000), Laoch (2003)and ConTempo Goes West (2005). Two of his films are held in the collection of the New York Museum of Modern Art and he was presented with a lifetime award by the National Film Institute in 2000. Retrospectives of his films were held in 1982 and 1987.

His writing ranges from a fictional memoir, Smokey Hollow (1991), to Maverick: a dissident view of broadcasting (2001), The Atlantean Irish (2005)and The Accompanist, novel (2006).

His donation to NUI Galway was supported by Udarás na Gaeltachta, and his exhibition continues at Galway City Museum until July 12th.