Dublin Civic Trust Bookfair Saturday 10th December

Saturday 10th December 2016 from 11am until 5pm, Dublin Civic Trust  who now reside at 18 Ormond Quay Upper Dublin will hold a book sale of their  many publications covering interests from the streets of Dublin to best practice in maintaining your heritage building.

Perfect Christmas gifts, walking tours of Dublin, Conservation and restoration manuals, Trees of Trinity, and many, many more…….

Drop in and get to know the Civic Trust.  They Rock!

bookstore-front

 

 

 

 

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Unique Dublin Artefact – John ffrench/Mirolo Mosaic

 

Mosaic_Mirolo

Mosaic in Boyers Restaurant, Dublin by John ffrench Irish Artist installed by Joe and David Mirolo – (The work is signed 1967)

Boyers of Earl Street is closing its doors for good.  Generations passed through these doors and the place is a wash with memory.  It is important to keep that connection to that memory, to that heritage, to that witness.
In the restaurant of Boyers is a mosaic artwork that many Dubliners over the generations enjoyed.  Too much of this unique work has been previously lost to skips and landfill.  Too many of our unique buildings, streets, have been simply bulldozed and replaced by ugly shopping centres or even uglier office blocks.  A thing of beauty is a joy forever.  This work was installed by Joe and David Mirolo an Italian-Irish family who made a cultural contribution through their trade to this city and indeed to this country.  This is multi-culturalism.  This artwork is the evidence and we must save this artefact, conserve and protect it for the joy and education of future generations. We cannot lose it or let it be taken away.
The Little Museum of Dublin would be an ideal place for this work to be represented and presented back to the Dublin people or any other similar place like it.  Indeed, I would go so far as to say that the North side of Dublin needs its own Little Museum of Dublin. We didn’t save Wood Quay in the past or the Quays.  Much of Dublin has been destroyed despite our cries – surely we can save this fine piece of Italian-Irish heritage? #loveculture
About the Mirolo family:
Guiseppe Mirolo came to Dublin in the 1930s, before the First World War he was studying medicine but that was all to change. He served his apprenticeship with artisans from his home region of Friuli in Northern Italy, he was also a ‘profigi’ or in modern terms a refugee. He worked hard to create a good life for his family and loved Dublin.
Some of his work survives in Dublin and in Christ the King Cathedral and the mosaic’s in Mullingar. The Harp on the steps of Walton’s Music Shop on North Frederick Street is his. The floor of the iconic Waldorf Barbershop is his floor.  The Mirolo family have been involved in Terrazzo & Mosaic for four generations now.
About the artist John ffrench:

John ffrench was born in Dublin to Irish and Italian parents. Travel and foreign inspiration has always been a factor in his work. His early art education was in design, drawing and calligraphy in the National College of Art in Dublin. In 1951, ffrench went to the Institute Statale d´Arte in Florence to study under professor Bruno Pauli. He stayed on in Italy until 1955 to work with like-minded ceramicists on one-off pieces and to soak up the innovations of Italian Modernism. The Mediterranean influence, so apparent in his work from then on, set him apart on his return to Ireland. At this time, Ireland had virtually no craft pottery tradition and mass produced and imported work was standard. Even in the 1950´s, the new craft schools based on the Bernard Leach school favoured the Anglo-Oriental style of dun-coloured pots, the “little brown pots” as they were known.

When ffrench returned to Ireland in 1956 he set up the ‘Ring Studio´ in Kilkenny with Peter Brennan. He began to create pots unlike any seen previously in the country; ffrench preferred to hand build rather than throw his pots and they were very sculptural and experimental in form. The cubist paintings of Picasso and Braque inspired both the ceramics and paintings he made at this time and much of his work was large and irregularly shaped (to the point that his work was described as “too obstinately asymmetrical” by a Dublin newspaper).

In 1962, ffrench returned to Ireland and founded the Arklow Studio Pottery. The Scandinavian Report into the status and quality of craft in Ireland had been scathing, a government initiative to improve standards by involving experts in the various fields was set up. Ffrench was closely involved in this capacity with Kilkenny Studios, which was producing designers for various industries. Influences from his time spent in India were seen in the imagery, colour, form and pattern work of his time. The studio produced tableware, pots, jewellery, wall panels in colourfully glazed, stamped and gilded finishes. In 1969, he moved to America and opened the Dolphin Studio in Massachusetts. With his wife he added batik works and silk-screen prints to his range. He made cheerfully coloured decorative temples and mythical buildings made from individual tiles and arranged like children´s building blocks. In 2007, John ffrench was honoured with a lifetime achievement show from the Arts Council of Ireland.

Truth by James Gandon


In October 2012 I put in a question to the City Manager in relation to a statue by James Gandon that had been knocked over by a Film Unit truck in Kings Inn, Dublin.  The statue, known as Truth (or ‘Henrietta’ locally) was left in the car park for over a year without protection except a bit of sacking.  In April 2013, again after many concerned locals asked about the protection of the statue, I again raised the issue with the City Council.  This statue formed part of the Four Courts prior to the Civil war.  After the shelling of the Four Courts there was not a scratch on this sculpture.  It was removed to the Kings Inns for safe keeping and good custody where it was more or less destroyed by wrecklessness and lack of due care.  Not only from the driver of the truck (who reversed into her) but from all of those who are charged with its safe keeping.  If those who are charged with the protection of our heritage fail at this level, God only knows what the future holds.

Henrietta Street is almost now an extension of a Film studios.  The impact of these trucks on this delicate area and the residents who live there needs to be addressed and we need far more transparency and accountability as to what is exactly happening to this sculpture (Truth) which was recently removed for supposed repairs.  Also, a date when it will be returned to its rightful place.

We certainly don’t want the kind of vandalism thats been shown by their most recent installation and its new unsightly plinth.

kings inn

Reinstalled Sculptures at Kings Inn with ‘out of place’ plinth.

 

 

October 2012  Questions to the City Manager:

Can the City Manager issue a report with regard to damage caused to a protected structure, an 18th century statue, at the Kings Inn in Henrietta Street Dublin on 4/5th April, 2012.  This damage would appear to have been caused while filming was taking place in this locality which is a heritage site and a protected structure.  It would appear a film truck backed into the plinth, toppling the statue to the ground. This protected heritage item has been removed and its whereabouts is unknown. The use of dwellings and listed buildings on Henrietta St has led to a careless disregard for these masterpieces of 18th century architecture.  Not withstanding the enormous disruption and inconvenience caused to residents by the constant use of this area as a film location, both day and night.  It would appear that no permission for change of use from dwelling to studio was sought by the owners of these properties.  It is the responsibility of the City Council to protect these structures and insist on compliance with the principles of care for listed buildings.

April 2013 Questions to the City Manager:

Question to City ManagerCity Council Meeting 04/02/2013

Q72.COUNCILLOR MANNIX FLYNN

Can the City Manager supply an updated report on what action has been taken in relation to the damaged ‘Gandon’ Statue at Henrietta St/Kings Inn which was damaged recently by being knocked over by a truck that was associated with the film unit engaged in filming in this location. This report to include assessment of damage to the statue, proposed repair works, who is liable and responsible for the damage and the cost of repair and who will pay. Also what steps have been taken to manage traffic and vehicle transport in this location with regards to filming and what safety measures have been initiated in order to protect similar objects and the protected structures.

 

CITY MANAGERS REPLY

“Truth” commonly known as Henrietta, was accidentally knocked off her pedestal in April 2012 by a film truck.  Immediately advice was sought from the Society’s Architect, stone and monumental sculpture conservators and from two well respected Architectural Historians (one gave advice on the author of the sculpture (believed not to be any person of significance)), the second gave advice on reinstatement, location, and possible alternative solutions.  All the fragments of Henrietta, including her head have been removed to a safe storage place in King’s Inns.  The three main pieces have been moved to temporary safety and will be stored in a properly protected storage area within the King’s Inns building as soon as the budget will allow for the hire of a crane.  To date, King’s Inns (a private unincorporated association of members) has incurred all the costs involved in the professional advices received.  King’s Inns has a working party in place to oversee the replacement / reinstatement of the statue as soon as is feasible.

 

Following the accident (involving a film truck), the King’s Inns Health and Safety Adviser was asked to work on a plan for the occasional use of the grounds by delivery trucks, by film trucks (mainly static once they park in an assigned place) and other vehicular traffic.  Advices are awaited.  The cost of this advice will be borne in its entirety by King’s Inns.

 

 

Press Release from owner of Thomas Reads, The Cutlers

Please see Press Release attached from the owners of Thomas Read’s, Ireland’s Oldest Shop. See also this link http://thegentlemansoldier.com/Thomas-Read-of-Dublin.html for additional information.

10th March 2014

Reeds, Number 4 Parliament Street, Dublin 2

 

In response to and clarification of RTE’s Morning Ireland coverage on 7th March 2014

 Background

No 4 Parliament Street is a private property owned by a private individual who having acquired the building two years ago, wishes to restore the property to its original status as a cutlery shop and as a private home.

The owner’s interest is in the conservation not renovation of both the building and the original shop.

It is not going to be developed nor refurbished, no change of use is planned and the business is to be reopened.

The owner has invested considerable time and resources in the conservation and restoration of the building over the last two years, including the following:

  • A world renowned author on history of the family, its business and the store.
  • A senior archivist was appointed to archive thousands of the products and materials found within the building.
  • All works to date including the archiving have been photographed and filmed for future publication.

With regard to the issue of the building being closed to the public:

 The building has been closed for almost 20 years.

The owner has appointed Kelly and Cogan Conservation Architects and has completed a considerable amount of conservation research into the building and over the last year, With the assistance of Dublin City Council, have already and continue to implement maintenance repair and conservation work . This work might not be highly visible but it is absolutely critical and ongoing.

 

Given the nature of the work it is expected that the building work will not be completed, subject to planning for at least 18 months.

–       ends –

Any questions relating to the architecture please contact:

Mr James Kelly RIAI RIBA

Kelly and Cogan

Architects and Design Consultants

81 North King Street

Smithfield

Dublin 7

Tel:   01 8721295

Fax:  01 8747476