ISLANDOLOGY. a place for collecting thoughts, ideas, process & research on the subject of islands. compiled & created by jo moore.

Feb 15

tōhoku land-islands.

Elevated land-based islands could protect people living in low-lying areas from tsunamis – and archipelagos of them could form entire towns.

Jan 10

cuan uibhist - the secret sea.

Three residency strands in Visual Art, Music and Gaelic Writingare taking place and will centre on making three different sea journeys to locations on the coastline of North Uist that were once occupied by people and most easily accessed by boat but now abandoned and gradually being reclaimed by nature.

 Natural markers on the coastline are used for navigation on sea routes that were once common knowledge in island communities. Awareness of weather, the tides, currents and hidden reefs dotted along the east side of North Uist would all have been part of the day-to-day business of navigating between scattered coastal settlements.–-the-secret-sea/

no boat required.

No Boat Required: Exploring Tidal Islands
Peter Caton; self-published
ISBN: 978-18487-67-01-0

When is an island not an island? Peter Caton takes us to all four corners of England, Scotland and Wales to find out.

Sharing our nation’s fascination with islands […] Peter set out to be the first person to visit all 43 tidal islands which can be walked to from the UK mainland.

I bet he doesn’t know that he’s an artist.

“a tract of land, smaller than a continent, surrounded by water at high water” Sully Island

Mar 15

Mar 1

the birth of an island.

Watching the Birth - and Death - of an Island.

Today I had a conversation with a colleague about earthquakes & eruptions, the earth as a work-in-progress; I came away with a sudden urge to make an animation about the birth of an island. 

Many new volcanic islands are ephemeral, lasting only months before disappearing again under the sea.

That struck me as a very apt analogy for the lifespan of an artwork - or an idea. Transience, impermanence.  The fast & fierce & fading intensity of volcanic activity vs. the slow, solid, relentless intensity of the sea, the waves, the water.

in japan, july 2010.

Holy islands.  Desert islands.  Prison islands.

Islands for exile; islands for holidays.

Volcanic islands (self-perpetuating).

An island does not stop being deserted simply because it is inhabited. (Deleuze)

An island is inward-looking but its borders are not fixed.  A coast “line” is a liminal, dynamic space, fluxing, changing, self-erasing & re-writing.

Feb 27


(Further to my previous post:) In our thoughts, a coastline is just that - a solid, unbroken, fixed and immoveable line.  As islanders, this is how our territory is delineated, how our world is mapped out; we know of a beginning and we know of an end; all is bounded & familiar in scope.  But it is not like this at all; the coastline is not a fixed and permanent thing, but a shifting, fluxing, transient space, permeable and inconstant, ever eroding, ever morphing, changing shape.  A dotted line, porous and flexible.  A liminal space; neither land nor sea.  A place of tension, characterised by an uneasy harmony of opposites.

2011.  A diagram to illustrate the difference between coastlines as we think they are and coastlines as they are. 

2011.  A diagram to illustrate the difference between coastlines as we think they are and coastlines as they are. 

Feb 22

island studies.

Island Studies is the global, comparative and inter-disciplinary study of islands on their own terms.

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