A Martello Tower in Fingal, Co Dublin, Ireland was the subject of this video art project RACER by Garrett Phelan . The location for the shot was the Balcarrick Martello Tower on the Donabate beach. RACER the video is made up of one organic shot that records the circular movements of the camera for 13 minutes 44 seconds. The camera’s movements trace the contours of an architectural structure situated in a landscape. The architectural structure was a Martello tower built by British Army Engineers at the beginning of the 19th Century to defend British territories from Napoleonic invasions. During the 20th Century the tower was also used as a domestic residence and is now derelict. It is a site of historical significance in Dublin and of personal significance to the artist. Initially recognizable, the building’s forms and location are absorbed by the movement of the camera and become part of the film, more than just a subject.

The artist began this project in 1995 and will continue to explore ideas surrounding it. It was originally exhibited independently in Dublin in 2003 under the name RACER RECAPTURED. Since then the project has had several manifestations in installation form. It was exhbited as part of Manifesta 5, European Biennial, in San Sebastion, Spain in 2005 under the title RACER. As RACER INTERRUPTED, located in Galerija Equirna, Ljubljana, Slovenia in 2004. As a large scale project entitled RACER UNTITLED exhibited at Firstsite, Colechester in 2006 from which there is a publication of the project. Photographs from the project have been exhibited at Paradise Row in London during 2009 as part of another project entitled 'At what point will common sense prevail'.

RACER has recently been part of Between two ITs, Garrett Phelan's first solo show in The Netherlands.



For RACER a series of microfiche have been produced.

MICROFICHE is material that has been photographed for archival purposes and has been hugely reduced in size and put onto small sheets of transparent film. A Microfiche Reader is needed to view sheets of microfiche and can generally be found in libraries although its format is quickly fading away.

Information on the making of RACER

The video installation RACER, whatever form it takes,in its simplest terms, sets out to present..............

'the inexplicability of the moment and the beauty inherent within the moment'

....that is its purpose and aim.

All links on this page are works that are associated with it and may or may not accompany the project wherever it is presented.