Thursday, September 5, 2013


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Battle Stations all lovers of Dublin!

Ormond Quay is under threat. We will be having a protest outside Ormond Hotel on Ormond Quay at 1pm this Saturday 7th September. Please Join us.

Bring some placards and make some noise. Get dressed up! Dubliners,  Joyce Junkies, and everyone remotely interested in standing up for once, get creative and lets save  the Ormond Hotel façade and a Ulyssean and Dublin landmark from the wrecking ball.

Several objections have been lodged already thank goodness, but lets keep the pressure up.

Perhaps Monteco Holdings don't realise the significance of the Ormond Hotel façade and the Joycean Ulysses connection, they are, after all based in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia but what are Dublin City Council thinking surely they should be the first to protest and to protect Dublin architecture of cultural and historical significance?

This is the authentic 1900's façade of Ormond Hotel that features majorily in Ulysses, it is the bricks and mortar original façade.

Anyway please do join us. This is David and Goliath time.
And please tell all your friends, family, media pals, etc. Let everyone know about it.

Regards, James

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Achtung! An original location from the Sirens chapter in Ulysses is in danger. Let's save the Ormond Hotel from demolition! You only have till Monday to object, so please go to the link below and follow on to Dublin City Council site.

Ormond Hotel made famous in Ulysses.

Ormond Quay Hotel is a Dublin landmark. It's a building of unique cultural importance to the city of Dublin and to world literature. It is specifically mentioned in Ulysses by James Joyce.

To knock it down completely would be to destroy an important and authentic Ulyssean, Joycean setting, and also an important tourist mecca.

Especially now that Bloomsday is going to become huge in this city, with plans underway to create a giant Bloomsday street carnival. The Ormond Hotel is one of a few original and authentic Ulyssean places to visit. This means a lot to a lot of people here and around the world as the Ormond hotel's frontage at least has remained as it was in Joyce's time. It's a unique selling point.I don't understand why Moteco Holdings don't see the potential goldmine they are sitting on .

The Ormond hotel is already famous because Joyce wrote about it, I'd urge them to use that fact, don't just put up another souless piece of modernity and kill off something truly unique and special and lucrative.

Keep at least the façade of the building, sort it out inside but don't destroy the front fabric of the building and if there is any of the original structure inside keep at least a section of it to promote the Joycean connection. It'll be worth it in the end. Destroy it and another piece of Dublin's rich heritage is gone and eventually there will be nothing left of her.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

And support our Arthur Guinness Project
I am involved with a great project called
Blowing up Bloomsday! Imagine a Dublin Mardi Gras on Bloomsday where anyone and everyone can get creative.

You can vote for us here every day until this Friday 23rd August.
We need about 4000 more votes than we have. Help if you can. Sign up takes two minutes and you can use more than one email address and vote more than once a day.
We're thinking along the lines of this kind of thing...

Wish us luck.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

A couple of great gigs, some sketches and a plein air painting of Sweny's Chemist

We were at two amazing gigs this weekend Aidan Coleman at Bradys in Terenure on Saturday night and Regina Spektor on Monday night. I did a few drawings of Aidan while I listened blown away by his skill and his charisma, wow is all I can say.
Hard to top him but Regina Spektor is a phenomenaly talented and quirky performer and if the crowd hadn't been so hystericaly enthusiastic (myself included) it would have been even better - oh but my head hurts from all the yelling and whooping and clapping.  It was bonkers but brilliant. No drawings of her yet but might have a crack soon.By God but the lady can sing and play piano, what a talent. Check her out if you get a chance.
Adian Coleman
Last Sunday's Dublin Sketcher's session had us out and about around Trinity College. I finally managed to bring a paired down oil painting kit with me, less is more. Anyway I had a go at painting the wonderful Sweny's Chemist on an 8x10"panel.
A small picture but it's all part of a larger plan to do an exhibition of Joycean Dublin, which is in turn part of our(At It Again! consisting of Jessica, Niall, Maite and myself) bigger project "Blowing up Bloomsday "- to turn Bloomsday into a more inclusive Mardi Gras like street festival  for which we are seeking some Arthur Guinness funding. We would be grateful if you might take two minutes to vote for us here please. And you can vote for us right up to August 23rd everyday and sign in with as many email addresses as you have.!
We're short about 4000 votes so every vote counts. Help! : )

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Wexford Art in the Open painting festival

Well it's over for another year but it was great fun and very, very inspiring once again. Hats off to TonyKevin, Neil and all the Plein Eire gang and the brilliant volunteers who made it such a joy for us participants. This was a great way to kick off painting again.

I put three oils into the Art in the Open exhibition in Greenacres
- see below

Gardens at Dusk, Enniscorthy 13x9"
In the Barn Bunclody 9x13"
Sentinel 13x9"

Highlights for me this year were once again Mary Duffy's paintings, one of which is shown here below. Unfortunately I don't have the original title, it was in Irish and possibly translates as Darkness or Gathering - the subject matter is a seascape with ominous clouds in the distance - it's very beautiful and if I could have afforded it I would have bought it.

Another I might have bought but someone else had,was by Frances Murray(could not find a link)
Her picture Wexford Beach won a prize and in my opinion very deservedly so, although stylized it captures a lovely sense of place and atmosphere as well as adding an air of mystery. I loved it.
Antti and Leon's quick draw piece from Enniscorthy donated by them and used to raise funds for charity.
I've knicked the following image from Antti's site where he knicked it from the original photographer Eric Claydon - sorry I don't have a link to Eric's site but he's a very nice bloke and hopefully won't mind.

Lori Putnam gave a very useful, common sense and inspiring "How to be a successful artist" lecture, I took lots of notes. One of her lovely paintings from the festival is also included below.

Michael Richardson was one of the judges, as always he does great work and is a great teacher as well as a very nice guy included here is a beautiful seascape he did.

Finally I have included this watercolour of an apple tree which I thought was delightfully painted and very charming by Chris Clark. 
Darkening Seascape by Mary Duffy

Leon Holmes and Antti Rautiola Photo by Eric Claydon

Wexford Beach by Frances Murray
Ballymore House by Lori Putnam
Seascape by Michael Richardson

Ancient Apple Tree Ballymore House by Chris Clark