THE LOBSTER AND THE LACUNA | An Giomach agus an Fhaochag

Saturday 6 May - Saturday 29 July | Disathairne 6 Cèitean – Disathairne 29 Iuchar
Taigh Chearsabhagh Museum & Arts Centre, Galleries 1 & 2
Free

Lobster (Nephropidae) –  A secretive and territorial marine animal with a hard exterior. A local proverb says: “Giomach, runnach is ròn, tri seòid a’ chuain”, “The Lobster, the mackerel and the seal, three heroes of the sea”.

Lacuna – A genus of small inter-tidal mollusc; A gap or vacancy; A prolonged silence; A missing piece of text or information.

A new exhibition takes us on a descent through the log books of Roberta Sinclair, naturalist and submariner. Her entries offer a glimpse into the 1950s heyday of the Hebridean Cable Transit company, and its underwater exploration of the Sound of Harris.

The Lobster and The Lacuna is our summer 2017 exhibition. Spread across two rooms at Taigh Chearsabhagh in North Uist, it is a descent through the log books of Roberta Sinclair, naturalist and submariner. Stationed on Berneray after the second world war, she was a keen sea swimmer and regularly explored the waters around the island, gaining the nickname An Giomach (The Lobster).

During the Slighe Sìoman’s heyday in the mid 1950s, the system expanded into the sound of Harris, when an unsuccessful attempt was made to create a new shipping hub on the east coast of the tiny island of Hermetray. Backed by investment from the then owners of Amhuinnsuidhe Castle, a small team built a prototype car which travelled from Berneray along the Grey Horse Channel to Hermetray, spending much of the route underwater to avoid crosswinds and interference with shipping.

Ms. Sinclair helped modify HCTC gondola No. 72 into an amphibious vehicle and was the only passenger on the prototype’s single voyage. Thinking both of a species of intertidal sea snail (Lacuna Vincta) and also of the silent unknowns of the world beneath the waves, she referred to her adapted cable car as The Lacuna.

The exhibition presents content from her log books and workshop, as well as the restored remains of gondola 72.

More information here.

Giomach (Nephropidae) –  Creutair mara le slige chruaidh a tha dìomhair agus a bhios a’ dìon a raoin fhèin. A rèir an t-seanfhacail: “Giomach, rionnach is ròn, tri seòid a’ chuain”.

Lacuna – Gnè fhaochagan beaga eadar-sruthach; Beàrn no àite bàn; Tost sìnte.

Tha taisbeanadh ùr gar stiùireadh tro leabhraichean-latha an eòlaiche-nàdair agus seòladair bhàtaichean-tumaidh, Roberta Nic na Ceàrdaich. Tha am fios sgrìobhte aice a’ toirt seachad blasad dhuinn de Shlighe Sìomain agus Hebridean Cable Transit Company agus mar a bha iad ri rannsachadh fo na tuinn ann an Caolas na Hearadh.

‘S e ‘An Giomach agus an Fhaochag’ an taisbeanadh samhraidh a th’ againn ann an 2017. Tha an taisbeanadh ri fhaicinn ann an dà sheòmar ann an Taigh Chearsabhagh, Uibhist a Tuath, agus e mar turas tro leabhar-latha Roberta Nic na Ceàrdaich a bha na h-eòlaiche-nàdair agus na seòladair bhàtaichean-tumaidh. Bha i stèidhichte ann am Beàrnaraigh an dèidh an Dàrna Cogaidh, bha i measail air a bhith a’ snàmh anns a’ mhuir agus chaidh am far-ainm ‘An Giomach’ a chur oirre air sàilleabh cho bitheanta ‘s a chìte i a’ snàmh ann am bàigh an eilein.

Chaidh Slighe Sìomain a leudachadh a-mach gu Caolas na Hearadh ann am meadhan nan 1950an nuair a rinneadh oidhirp airson port ùr do shoithichean mòra a chruthachadh air taobh sear eilean beag Hearmatraigh. Cha do shoirbhich leis an sgeama. Chaidh am pròiseact a mhaoineachadh leis na daoine am bu leis Caisteal Abhainn Suidhe agus dhealbhaich sgioba beag dreachd de chàr a shiubhail à Bearnaraigh thar a’ chaolais a Hearmatraigh, agus cuid den t-slighe sin fon uisge airson a’ ghaoth làidir agus bàtaichean a sheachnadh.

Chuidich Roberta Nic na Ceàrdaich le atharrachaidhean air gondola HCTC Àireamh 72, ga thionndadh na charbad a rachadh fon uisge agus b’ ise an aon neach-siubhail air an aon turas a rinn an carbad sin. Chuir i The Lacuna air a’ charbad-càbaill aice agus i a’ smaoineachadh air seòrsa de dh’fhaochag eadar-sruthach (Lacuna Vincta) agus cuideachd air an t-saoghal shàmhach dhìomhair fo na tuinn.

Tha an taisbeanadh a’ sealltainn earrainnean às an leabhar-latha aice agus nithean às a’ bhothan-obrach aice cho math ri gondola 72 fhèin.