Filled with the spirit of gratitude for all that I have in my own life, I approached this installation by artist Rowan Gillespie. As the world passes by, with people going about their daily business, it can be easy to forget how so many Irish struggled just to survive, and the fact that so many of them did not. In the midst of morning traffic, a strange sort of quiet descended on this small part of the Custom House Quay where the figures stand, in memory of all those Irish who lost their lives to the Great Famine, An Gorta Mór, of 1845-1852, and I realized the loss is an unfathomable one.
The Irish Quarterly Review of 1854 offered the following commentary on the great number of starving Irish walking along the Liffey to board the famine ships at the quays:
"A procession fraught with most striking and most melancholy interest, wending its painful and mournful way along the whole line of the river to where the beautiful pile of the Custom house is indistinguishable in the far distance."
Men and Women
are condemned to live in
poverty, human rights are violated.
To come together to ensure that these
rights are respected is our solemn duty.
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All photographs Copyright©J.Geraghty-Gorman 2011.