Re: Re: ‘Dutch Billys’
There’s good news and bad news on the Seamus O’Colmain front.
The good news is that, some of his other sketches and paintings suggest that he could, on occassion, hold one or two lines of perspective together, which is encouraging if we’re hoping to establish that his ‘Old Dublin Street’ view contains anything like accurate streetscape information.
The bad news is that O’Colmain never seems to have had much of a clue himself where any of the streetscapes that he depicted in his paintings actually were.
Take this painting, apparently entitled; ‘the Bellman, Meath Street’
Even the lowest council official in the comatose wing of the conservation department could tell you that this streetscape is the north side of Back Lane, featuring, as it does, the great baroque entrance to Tailors Hall.
In fact, O’Colmain’s painting exhibits a remarkable resemblence to the above photograph of the same scene in the Old Dublin Society’s collection, which rather leads to the suspicion that O’Colmain may not have been trudging down the grubby streets of 1940s Dublin, sketch book in hand, but instead, taking the slightly easier route of lifting his views from old photographs.
This may not be particularly welcome news to anyone who may have bought one of O’Colmain’s paintings, at around €4,000 a pop, but it’s good news for us, if it means that there may be a corresponding photograph of that ‘Old Dublin Street’ with those, apparently twin-gabled houses, slumbering in a collection somewhere.