Thursday, April 23, 2015

Spring Awakening

Spring Awakening is basically a day of open culture in Dublin 1. It happened on the 16th of April and I'm glad I had the opportunity to step inside some of Dublin's best kept secrets, celebrating this city's heritage and sense of culture. There were so many activities to experience: tango lessons (which I didn't attend because there was no free Argentinean food included), workshops, gigs, guided tours, Georgian architecture porn, all things James Joyce... Obviously, I couldn't have done everything (or maybe I could if I woke up earlier...) but I did the best to enjoy what this postcode has to offer.

The first place I went to was The Hugh Lane Gallery. A free guided tour took me to a temporary litography exhibition, made me marvel at a plethora of Impressionist wonders, introduced me to a few modern art iconic pieces on display... What struck me the most, however, was Francis Bacon's Studio. So messy and inspiring! I love Bacon's work - his emotionally charged, raw, disturbingly bold paintings always made me wonder what's the story behind them. Maybe it's just instinct. Or intimacy. Either way, I can relate to such imagery. Next stop: Belvedere House.

Belvedere House didn't let me down. In fact, I was astonished at this magnificent Georgian masterpiece where James Joyce himself studied between 1893 and 1898. I'm a sucker for beautiful interiors and I've always wanted to visit this impressive house and its jaw-dropping interiors but usually it's closed to the public. As you can imagine, I couldn't possibly miss this open day to view a house that I would certainly (try to) buy if I won the Euromillions. Great Denmark Street, you harbour a fucking treasure!

I walked down North Great George's Street to see what was going on at the James Joyce Centre. Again, I was not disappointed with this cultural institution. Plus, free entrance! James Joyce devotee or not, you will find yourself curious and intrigued about the man who wrote a book you didn't even read. I am particularly interested in his love story with Nora Barnacle - their letters would make priests and pornographers blush! In case you're not a Literature enthusiast at all, Joyce's death mask is still pretty worth a visit anyway.

Before going home, I knocked on Hillsboro Fine Art Gallery's door. That was right after I popped in Dublin Writers Museum for Neil O'Shea's performance at 6pm. Founded in 1995, Hillsboro Fine Art is a contemporary gallery widely recognised. There were free hardback Hillsboro publications for all attendees and a lot of artwork to stare at. Irish artist Gwen O'Dowd was there to welcome whoever wanted to take a look at her paintings. Next stop: feckin' Aldi so we're done here.


  1. Uma proveitosa jornada, testemunhada por belas fotos, como sempre.
    Aquele atelié de Francis Bacon é que me deixou a imaginar como seria possível
    pintar numa confusão daquelas... mas talvez me ajude a perceber a minha confusão
    de papéis. ;-)

  2. This sounds like an awesome day! You seem to be really thriving in Dublin, which is wonderful. I love your photos as usual and that "I wrote Ulysses..." poster made me smile. :)

  3. I love events like these! Sounds like you had a really fun day.

  4. Pá revejo a arte do Bacon naquele estúdio, acho que só assim mesmo é que faz sentido pintar o que ele pintou. Não sou fã, mas sempre achei os quadros dele caóticos, e vendo o estúdio, lol, fez-se luz!!

  5. Spring Awakening is such a wonderful idea: it's fantastic that they open the city up to let residents and visitors see the culture and creativity which may otherwise go overlooked. I'm a big fan of days like these, like museum open days when admission is free - anything which makes art and history more accessible must be a good thing!

    Belvedere House is a thing of beauty. I can't even imagine studying somewhere so stunning.


  6. Até me deu qualquer coisa com o estúdio do Bacon :c tás-me a dar uma vontade de ir pra Dublin um mês mulher!

  7. I just discovered your blog and it is pure brilliance! Dublin is such an amazing place,I love walking it's streets,it's so seeped in history from the GPO to Stephens Green where Joyce used to walk. x