My personal projects attempt to magnify queer Irish identities through portraiture and documentary photography; my work conveys intimate moments and emotions in a country marked by the rigid sexual mores of Catholicism. Challenging traditional notions of Irish femininity, masculinity and sexuality, these projects encourage spectators to connect with my subjects as both individuals and as community. Each of these successful projects represent the epicentre of what my practise means in today's society
Now and Forever, Interpersonally Queer (2022-2023)
Queer or not, we all feel like the centre of our own universes. As we all live our lives, we inevitably become sub-plots or recurring characters in other’s universes. Accordingly, in the context of this queer photography exhibition, the interactions within the queer community become overlapped, slowly connecting, tie by tie.
You suddenly become best friends with an ex-partner’s housemate, you date a girl who also dated the girl you ghosted last year, etc. The list goes on, the ties extend. And us queers, we all discover, these pathways between each other are only few degrees separation from one another. Such highly interpersonal and parasocial communities tend to exist purely within marginalised circles. But why?
Society often rejects queer individuals which in turn, encourages us to find comfort in our queer relationships as the particles of our community who are also rejected collectively accept and nurture queerness. “Now & Forever, Interpersonally Queer” attempts to display the quality and strength of these interpersonal ties. Some are so powerful; our bonds with other queers make us feel more accepted in our lives than ever before. Accordingly, the notion of our “chosen queer family”attempts to deconstruct our perception of what a “family unit” can be. This photography project aims to take these heteronormative structures and queer them. And present them for what they are: beautiful, joyful, messy, euphoric, chaotic, but significantly life-changing.
Hosted at All my Friends, Dublin Ireland in late 2022 - early 2023
Still an on-going project.
Please note, not all photos from this project feature here.
No Queer Apologies (2022)
Through a series of film photographs, “No Queer Apologies” photo book and exhibition, aims to interrogate both our sense of place and the ways in which queerness exists, permeates and reshapes space.
In exploring the queer experience in a private and public context, and the liminality where the two intersect, this series seeks to strip space of its heternormative rules that have long drawn boundaries governing space, deciding what is and what should be. Instead, and in their place, I hope these photos succeed in illustrating the “open mesh of possibilities, gaps, overlaps, dissonances and resonances, lapses and excesses of meaning” which are performed, expressed and have persisted to reinvent queerness in many of its celebrated iterations, because of and in spite of these rules.
In the private context, we think of mind and body, self-expression behind closed doors and half-opened blinds through which the light creeps in. These places represent an inner sanctum which sees queerness expressed in relation to oneself, one’s body, one’s thoughts and one’s personal objects.
In the public context, it’s the locker-rooms, the bathroom stalls and the streets. It’s the places sometimes unsafe and the places where heteronormativity’s security is coveted. Where there is an intersection between the private and public queer experience, there is also a creation of new space, reimagined and put to different uses. Like dark corners, these spaces are cloaked from public view and make private moments and acts of queer intimacy possible.
At the core of this project is the idea that there is an infinite set of ‘possibilities’ in relation to queer expression, looks, feelings, experience and definitions. These photos are my own attempt at capturing a few in the light, many grounded in lived experience or memorable conversations. As such, I hope they are inclusive of some of the viewer’s experiences, but I humbly acknowledge where they fall short.
“No Queer Apologies” establishes what should already be abundantly clear: no apologies were made during the making of this queer project.
Hosted at Block T Dublin and Hen's Teeth Gallery, Dublin Ireland in 2022
NAQ - Photobook:
First Edition, SOLD OUT IN 6 DAYS Softcover
250 x 180 mm
Queer Hearts of Dublin (2020)
"During August 2020, aspiring film photographer and videographer Niamh Barry posted a series of photographs to her Instagram account (@narryphotographyvids), entitled Queer Hearts of Dublin. The project aims to reflect the vibrant queer community in Dublin in a diverse and inclusive manner. Barry, aged 22, photographed 15 queer young people from an array of backgrounds, including a self-portrait as the final shot." - Ruth McGann
Hosted at Hen's Teeth Gallery, Dublin Ireland in 2022