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Post-Troubles contexts and contradictions
Declan Long

struck by how much has changed since the late 1990s’.58 Northern Ireland, Cox suggests, ‘feels a very different place in the early part of the twenty-​first century than it did before the agreement was signed in 1998’.59 At the opening of the book Making Peace With the Past: Memory, Trauma and the Irish Troubles, Graham Dawson offers his own observations on the ‘different place’ that the city of Belfast in particular has become: Since the paramilitary ceasefires of 1994, the centre of ‘post-​conflictBelfast, between the City Hall and the River Lagan, has been a site

in Ghost-haunted land
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‘Northern Irish art’ in the wider world
Declan Long

’ tours now offered in post-​conflict Belfast. These works will be returned to in Chapter 4, but it is useful to note at this stage that the title of the latter video, Dogs Have No Religion (deriving from fact that during the troubles, a greyhound track in Belfast became one place where sectarian tensions were understood to be irrelevant) was borrowed to name another group representation of Northern Ireland’s contemporary artists, shown at the Czech Museum of Fine Arts in Prague during the summer of 2006. This exhibition also made a case for correcting a distorted view

in Ghost-haunted land
Declan Long

a way as to make subtle connections with the formal rigour of abstract modernism, while subverting the aspirations of such art by simultaneously evoking the desolation of urban environments. Breuer’s work might, perhaps, be seen to have closer affinity with the practice of John Duncan, the younger Northern Irish photographer whose downbeat and detached Becher-​inspired, cataloguing of post-​conflict Belfast, we have touched on already. For, like Duncan, Breuer maintains a commitment to presenting his subjects against ‘neutral’ grey skies, a policy that obviously

in Ghost-haunted land