At the End of the Rainbow Lies Belfast
Is a photography series about the complex LGBTIQ+ scene in Belfast, Northern Ireland.Due to political and religious conflicts, still a feature of life in Northern Ireland, the social landscape remains staunchly conservative.
For the most part, the LGBTIQ+ scene still resides on the periphery of society in Belfast. The leading political force in Northern Ireland – the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) is a right-wing party, whose beliefs and policies draw from Old Testament, Biblical doctrine. It has absolutely no desire to, nor intention of, furthering the rights of LGBTIQ+ community within the Northern Irish borders.
This project portrays the LGBTIQ+ community of Belfast. The scene is incredibly creative, with countless acts, shows, artists and performers. This expression of creativity, in times of oppression, is something Jessica, who herself has Northern Irish roots, was keen to capture. It is left up to the individual, how and where they would like to present themselves. The image is then staged with carefully picked out light and colour gels. With this the portraits become an investigation of the artist’s impression and each protagonist’s self-reflection. Hearing some of the Belfast protagonists’ voices while viewing the images at the exhibition, ensures that the community’s own voice is heard. They provide the viewer with a more emotional, familiar connection. The viewer is forced not only to look, but also to listen.