Archive for July, 2011

Great stuff from the Mad Art gallery on Lower Gardiner Street.

Every first Saturday of each month MadArt Gallery will leave a small painting or a sketch with a note “PLEASE TAKE ME” on the pink bike just beside the door. Whoever will be passing this place is allowed to take the art work with no question asked. There is one condition. YOU HAVE TO LIKE IT AND APPRECIATE IT! We want to make art available to everyone!


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I absolutely love this, a recent pick-up. It is a copy of J’ai Vu (I Saw) magazine from just after rebellion in Dublin, dated May sixth. Of course at that point in time executions were still taking place.

Great info on J’ai Vu is available here:

‘J’ai Vu’ (‘I Saw’ or ‘I Was an Eyewitness’) was somewhat similar to ‘Le Miroir’. It consisted mainly of war-related photos with a few articles. The first weekly issue appeared in November 1914, when it became obvious the war would not be over with for some time to come yet. Between August and October of 1914, publication of many French magazines was interrupted by the outbreak of war. Around the same time, new magazines, publishing almost exclusively war news started to appear.

The frontpage shows General Maxwell who supressed the rebellon in Ireland. Notice the ‘Sinn Féiner’ shown (!), and the reference to Sir. Roger Casement is interesting. Enjoy.

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The legendary Jerry Dammers pops into The Button Factory tonight to play a free DJ set, kicking off at 8pm. Of course Jerry was controversially missing from the recently re-united Specials, and has instead continued to tour independently and alongside the Spatial A.K.A Orchestra. His collection of vinyl records means tonight could be a great set, and with an early kick off shouldn’t get in the way of work tomorrow eh?

Firstly, I’m off to Inchicore to follow text updates of Pats in the Ukraine. Believe.

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I’ve previously written about 1980s Dublin New Wave band Autobop and specifically their one and only fantastic 1983 single Secrets with boasts an even stronger b-side Advertising.

Now, their guitarist and vocalist Damien Callaghan (aka Damien O’Ceallachain) has uploaded some great footage of the band onto Youtube.


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On the airwaves.

Just a quick note this morning to say I’ll be filling in for Tommy Graham (History Ireland editor) today on Sean Moncrieff’s programme on Newstalk at 3pm. The programme features a brief history slot, and I’m going to be discussing an aspect of Dublin history that should interest many: Dublin of the 1930s, and in particular the Animal Gang and the gangs who followed.

Below is a fascinating letter from George Gilmore and Frank Ryan of the Republican Congress sent to all the leading national papers on the political situation in 1930s Dublin, making mention of the Animal Gang.

Tune in.

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Today’s Irishman’s Diary tells the fascinating story about how the plaque on George Bernard Shaw’s birthplace on Synge Street was erected, not by the city council, but by a devoted fan and local bin man.

“The other dustman in Shaw’s life was Patrick O’Reilly, who emptied dustbins around the Synge Street area for 40 years before retiring in 1953. The following year I interviewed him for the Edinburgh magazine Chambers’s Journal.

O’Reilly’s connection with Shaw had started more than 40 years earlier when he saw Shaw’s Man and Superman in the old Rotunda Theatre. In his tiny and scrupulously clean municipal cottage around the corner from Synge Street, he showed me the tattered volume of Shaw’s plays he had taken down each day for 40 years, as well as the 26 letters and five postcards Shaw had written him.

In 1944, Dublin presented Shaw with the freedom of the city and sent representatives to Ayot St Lawrence with the roll of freemen for Shaw’s signature. Two years later Shaw celebrated his 90th birthday. The postman brought him a small present from Ireland, a little gold shamrock the Dublin dustman had bought in a pawnshop.

Back from Ayot St Lawrence came a card. “A golden shamrock!” Shaw wrote. “What a charming gift! It is on my watch-chain and it will remain there until I myself drop off it.”

In 1947, O’Reilly wrote to Shaw saying he had collected enough from his bin customers to erect a plaque to him on the Synge Street home where he was born.

Would Shaw approve the inscription, “He gave his services to his country, unlimited, unstinted and without price”? Shaw’s reply was typical. “Dear Pat: Your inscription is a blazing lie. I left Dublin before I was twenty and I have devoted the remainder of my life to Labour and International Socialism and for all you know I may be hanged yet.” Shaw then sent over a drawing showing the design he wanted for the plaque – a wreath of shamrocks in marble with the inscription mentioned above.”

The story continues here. For those interested, The Shaw Birthplace museum is open from June – August on Tuesdays, Thursdays & Saturday s from 11.00am-3.30pm.


Photo credit - Renaud Camus

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Everlasting Lo... Oh wait, its grand

You come across some crackers scribbled up on bathroom walls in this city, but the above will take some beating in my book. By my reckoning its the same hand for both the initial teary lament and the sardonic after thought after the poor bloke got his rock-and-roll. Brilliant.

Only a couple of pictures today, I was away up in Belfast with JayCarax for the Anti-Racism World Cup at the weekend, and a great weekend that was. I’ll get a review of that up soon!

Dental Plan... Lisa needs braces... Dental Plan.. Lisa needs braces

Dublin humour interspliced with a paraphrased Simpsons quote. Love it. I fully endorse both freedom for Palestine and free dental plans.

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