history and architecture walking tours of Dublin
Stunning footage of Dublin back in 1915, courtesy of Pathé and of the Irish Film Institute (the IFI) 3 minutes, 37 seconds long in total. It depicts a city during WWI but far from the front, with civilians going about their daily business, at the bank, the shops, catching a tram, and so on.
The footage was all of course, originally in Black and White. It has more recently been colourised and also given a basic “atmospherics” sound track, of horses hooves, tram bells, and other ambient city sounds of that era. Not everyone is a fan of such interventions- many historians feel they distort original source material- personally I feel that both these two later interventions add to the experience, bringing it far closer, and making it far more accessible and immediate.
The short film starts as you can see, at the Wellington memorial in Phoenix park, then travels around College Green, Bachelors’ Walk, Sackville St/ O’Connell Street, Eden Quay and elsewhere. On Sackville/ O’Connell Street (the street changed name around Independence) it is particularly powerful for an Irish audience to look at the GPO (General Post Office) knowing what great and momentous events would unfold there, less than one year later.
For those interested in architectural history, the gigantic building on the right of Sackville/ O’Connell Street, with the enormous dome on top, towering over the surrounding buildings, was the DBC (the Dublin Bread Company) a chain of cafes in the capital. This was their flagship store, and that huge overhead dome was a big attraction, providing a viewing platform inside for their customers, with panoramic views over the whole city. This magnificent old building perished in the conflagration of 1916, when much of the street went up in flames. Incidentally, one of the factors that made those fires of Easter 1916 so destructive, and so spectacular at nighttime, was the contents of a chemical store on teh street, called Hoyte’s. Keep an lookout during the parts of the footage in College Green. A tram passes, festooned in advertising. Blink and you’ll miss it. But the eagle-eyed will spot an advert for Hoyte’s on the front of a tram.
Anyhow, that’s enough commentary and interpretation from me! I’ll leave you to savour this wonderful film. Enjoy!
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Below: O’Connell Street after Easter 1916.
On the 5th of January we began Episode-1 of our first five Art History and Appreciation Talks. These richly -illustrated events are hosted each week on the now-universally-familiar Zoom platform. They boast far more beautiful images however than your average Power-Point on Zoom! Instead of flow chart and pie-charts, picture instead (already covered) stunning details from a Fra Angelico Annunciation, a memorial by Paulo Uccello, a portrait by van Eyck, or a Crucifixion scene by Rogier van der Weyden.
The talks are conducted live each Tuesday early afternoon (with two o’clock sharp start-time (14.00 GMT each week) Each talk is then also available within just a few hours to watch in recorded form also, for those who could not make the live event, or for those who simply wish to revisit the images and ideas. (The same ticket is used whether you enjoy the talk live or recorded, although the links to the live and to the recorded talk are sent out to ticket-holder in two separate emails)
Our course so far has covered Giotto in the 1300s, through the first half of the Italian and Florentine “Quatrocento” (Masaccio, Donatello, Fra Angelico, Paulo Uccello et al) then crossed the Alps as it were last week, to enjoy the great so-called “Netherlandish Primitive ” painters like van Eyck and van der Weyden.
The “bad news” is that there is just one remaining talk in this first first cycle of 5 talks, Mantegna and Bellini – this Tuesday 2nd of February (with the recorded version hot on its heels). There are two bits of good news however, the first is it’s still possible to buy a one-off ticket for that one, individual talk, Andrea Mantegna & Giovanni Bellini here This ticket, priced €12.50 is available up to 12pm Irish time, Tuesday 2nd of February. That’s to say, until 2 hours prior to the talk .
The second, even-better news is that there is still, as we write, some availability remaining for 5- in One tickets for the entire second half of the series. In other words a discounted 5-Talk ticket covering Talks 6 to 10 inclusive. Tickets for this second half of the series are just €50 – valid for all 5 talks- and are available here.
If a green “Buy Now” button pops up on your screen while reading, you may also hit that instead, then navigate to Zoom Art Talks, then to the window for Ticket to Talks 6-10 (Feb 9th to March 9th)
These five talks cover the legendary High Renaissance, with great names Botticelli, Leonardo, Michelangelo, Raphael, then progress to Italian masters of the 1600s like Caravaggio and the legendary sculptor Gian Lorenzo Bernini, then onto Dutch luminaries like Rembrandt and Vermeer. Finally, in our last week, we’ll conclude with a discussion of “Grand Tour” Art of the 1700s. (Canaletto and others)
All of the talks, as noted above are richly illuminated with examples of the best artworks and many telling details: close-ups which reveal nuances of style, of technique, composition, meaning and symbolism.
*This 5-in One ticket also includes access to all 5 live talks and free additional access to each recorded talk, for Talks 6- 10. All guests are entitled to watch either the live and recorded versions, of every event Talks 6- 10 or both if they so wish. A link to each talk is emailed to guests within 24 hours of the live event and is then available to view for a minimum of 7 days.
Overall, this is a gentle, highly enjoyable yet superb introduction to deepen your understanding of the great Art of Italy and the Low Countries, with stunning artworks from the mid-1440s to the mid-1700s and some of the greatest art ever made in Europe. Talks last approximately 1 hour to 1 hour 15 minutes. A bonus feature, a live Q&A, is also available at the end of each live talk: only for those who wish to put questions or observations to the host. This is not recorded, for obvious date protection reasons. There is no obligation or expectation whatsoever for anyone to attend the Q&A: it’s only a bonus feature for those who may wish to pose a question or remark.
The feedback so far has been extraordinary. We are very happy and proud to be able to make the course available to another 12- 15 people, subject naturally to availability.
If you are able we hope you will join us for this second half of the series. Tickets are available, once again, here.
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Arran Henderson | Dublin Decoded
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See you on tour!
Following the success of our June and October Zoom talks on Architecture and local history, we are now running a series of richly illustrated Zoom talks on Art, starting at 2pm on Tuesday 5th January and continuing every Tuesday for 10 weeks. These are talks on Art History and Appreciation, where we will explore some of the most famous old master artists from Giotto to Vermeer, and beyond. We think many of our guests will really enjoy and savour these talks. We also think they could make a perfect gift for any family member or friend who has always been an art lover.
The first talk starts at the birth of the Renaissance, with Giotto. In the following weeks we will look and talk our way through Masaccio, Donatello, Fra Angelico, Jan van Eyck, Botticelli, Raphael, Caravaggio, Jan Vermeer, Canaletto and many more.
Along the way we’ll meet these legendary artists in history and get to grips with their astonishing achievements. We’ll learn about their lives and artistic context, try to see and understand them as their contemporaries first did, and try comprehend the impact their art made in its own time and the influence it exerted thereafter.
Single Tickets can be purchased for any of the individual talks, or Combined (and discounted) Tickets for a whole block of either 5 talks or for all 10 talks. See more below. For no extra charge, it’s also possible to watch and listen to the talk on a recorded version, available from the following day and for 6 additional days afterwards (using the same ticket/s).
Here are the topics and dates, starting with our first talk on Tuesday 5th January. All live talks commence at 2pm Irish Time each Tuesday. Don’t forget, even if you can’t make the original time you can still buy a ticket and enjoy any of the 10 talks in its recorded version the next day (and for the following 6 days). Here is the running order…
Week 1 Art Talk: 2pm (Irish Time) Tuesday 5 January 2021: Giotto, the Arena Chapel and the Dawn of the Renaissance. Individual ticket available here.
Week 2 Art Talk: 2pm (Irish Time) Tuesday 12 January 2021: the Quattrocento – Masaccio and Uccello, Donatello and Brunelleschi. Individual ticket available here.
Week 3 Art Talk: 2pm (Irish Time) Tuesday 19 January: the Quattrocento continued: Fra Angelico, San Marco and the Medici. Individual ticket available here.
Week 4 Art Talk: 2pm (Irish Time) Tuesday 26 January: the Northern masters: Jan van Eyck, Rogier van der Weyden & their peers. Individual ticket available here.
Week 5 Art Talk: 2pm (Irish Time) Tues 02 February: the “Early-High” Renaissance in Italy: Andrea Mantegna and Giovanni Bellini. Individual ticket available here.
(It’s also possible to purchase a discounted 5 talks-in-1 ticket, valid for the first 5 talks, here.) Or see below for other combined ticket options.
Week 6 Art Talk: 2pm (Irish Time) Tuesday 09 February: the Renaissance in Italy continued. Piero della Francesca, Sandro Botticelli and Leonardo da Vinci. Individual ticket available here.
Week 7 Art Talk: 2pm (Irish Time) Tuesday 16 February: the High Renaissance in Italy, continued: Michelangelo and Raphael. Individual ticket available here.
Week 8 Art Talk: 2pm (Irish Time) Tuesday 23 February: Italy and the Baroque in the 1600s: Caravaggio and Artemisia Gentileschi; and the sculptor Gian Lorenzo Bernini. Individual ticket available here.
Week 9 Art Talk: 2pm (Irish Time) Tuesday 02 March: Holland in the 1600s Rembrandt and Jan Vermeer. Individual ticket available here.
Week 10, final Art Talk: 2pm (Irish Time) Tuesday 09 March: the Grand Tour Tradition in 1700s Italy, and the Art of Panini, Piranesi and Canaletto. Individual ticket available here.
All talks cost €12.50 plus booking fee when purchased individually. Alternatively, you can purchase one of our 3 combined ticket options, at a saving of €12 to €30. The three combined ticket options are as follows:
2. a combined 5-in-1 ticket for the second half of the course, valid from Talk 6 to Talk 10 for €50 + booking fee. Buy this 5-in-1 ticket here. for the second half of the course from 9th February to 9th March. This ticket also includes free additional access to each recorded talk, for Talks 6-10. A link to each talk is emailed to guests within 24 hours of the live event. Each is then available to view for +6 days after delivery.
3. the entire course of 10 talks for €100 + booking fee (approx €30 saving, relative to individual tickets). Buy the full course of 10 Talks-in One Ticket Here. This ticket also includes free additional access to each recorded talk, for all Talks 1-10. A link to each talk is emailed to guests within 24 hours of the live event. Each is then available to view for +6 days after delivery.
If you have a good friend or family member keen to learn more about Art, please consider purchasing one or more talks as a gift. Or, if you yourself are the biggest art-lover you know, and keen to learn more, then we look forward to seeing you online!
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