1957 – Small Grocer’s Shop, Dublin

Architect: Design Research Unit

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In 1953, at the request of Herbert Read, and with support from the Irish Arts Council, Thurloe Conolly set up a “Design Unit for Ireland” office in Dublin. The co-directors included Senator Edward Maguire, Dermot O’Regan of CTT and Alan Nolan of the publishers Brown and Nolan. Essentially an Irish branch of DRU (Design Research Unit), a European design consortium founded by Herbert Read, Misha Black and Milner Grey, the Dublin office survived for several years before Conolly moved to London, to work with Read in the central DRU office.

This small grocery store was constructed in Dublin, and the illustrations published in The Architect and Building News, May 15 1957.

“The shop front was designed in a spruce frame to organise this display into a pattern, and arrange so that it is to some extent doublesided, goods in the window being viewed also from inside. The unfortunate proportions of the old front were masked by superimposing a pattern composed of lathes, mosaic, fascia, and so on. There is a canvas blind of narrow orange, green, and white stripes, which folds into the area above the window previously occupied by a transome light. The mosaics is black, dark olive green, and white, the fascia grey with white ceramic letters, the stall-riser and surround white and the woodwork unpainted mahogany.”