Hope

Kilkenny Castle

The opening picture was taken from Kilkenny Castle window this summer. Its extensive front lawn stretches for about half a mile and blends into the park. I have been there numerous times. Years ago you would see dozens of grey squirrels over there, but someone set traps and killed 75 squirrels just before my other pictures from this blog were taken. On that particular trip I only saw one squirrel munching on peanuts deeper in the park.

I took these pictures on two foggy days in January and November 2010. In January I went to see the Angels – Beacons of Hope exhibition created and coordinated by Dublin based artist Nollaig Fahy, and in November I went there frozen with grief after my friend’s funeral, all hope gone.

You probably won’t find much information about these two events in the internet any more, so I decided to write a few words about the Angels. We need hope in 2017 as we did in 2010.

Kilkenny Castle

Kilkenny Castle

Kilkenny Castle

Kilkenny Castle

More than fifty colorful, eight foot tall angels lined the castle courtyard to bring the message of hope before they continued their nationwide tour.

Kilkenny Castle

Angels - Beacons of hope

Angels - Beacons of hope

Made from a single mould they had been created to be a blank canvas. Invitations had been sent to a variety of artists, sport stars and other celebrities, some schools and prisons to paint an angel. For the general public the street angels were available so that people could leave a signature or a thumb imprint.

Angels - Beacons of hope

One of the angels in the picture below, the one with the Jedward brothers painted on it, was designed and painted by a freelance artist Sara Sheridan. She and her team painted some of the ‘big name’s’ angels.

Kilkenny Castle

One of my favorites, the Rose of Hope angel was designed and painted by Irish fashion designer Lisa Fitzpatrick.

Kilkenny Castle

Some other names that could be mentioned are Uma Thurman, The Edge, Irish novelist Neil Jordan, actors Brendan Gleeson, Colin Farrell and Cillian Murphy, comedian Des Bishop, broadcaster Ryan Tubridy, designer Budd Holden, professional golfer Padraig Harrington, rugby player Brian O’Driscoll and his colleague from Australia Rocky Elsom.

Padraig Harrington’s angel.

Kilkenny Castle

This is a short video where Nollaig Fahy tells the story about the angel painted in a woman prison.

 

 

After they had toured around Ireland, the angels returned to Dublin for auction. I have read that Theย Hope Springs Eternal angel designed and painted by Irish impressionist Gerard Byrne was purchased by Chris de Burgh and went to Glencree Centre for Reconciliation in Co Wicklow. I don’t know if all the angels were sold, and where the other angels are now. They are somewhere in the world anyway.

Artist Nollaig Fahy says in his video:

I really would like to change the national conversation from one of doom and gloom to one of hope.

Kilkenny Castle

“Paint your angel”, make the world brighter. Hope v Gloom –ย  I put my bet on hope.

inesemjphotographyย Have a wonderful week!

101 comments

  1. Breathtaking photos! Each one is a meditation in itself. Your art magnifies the beauty of God’s creation. Thank you. Keep up the great work.

  2. I love the message of this post and the words and images you have used to illustrate it. The angels are so beautiful and the message of hope shines fro each and every one. Wonderful photos of the angels and your ‘foggy’ photos are so atmospheric.

  3. I love them as a blank canvas. ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ So sorry about your friend. I paused at the name Kilkenny because some walking friends have family nearby and they’re there for Christmas. I hope 2018 is kind to you.

  4. Such an uplifting, positive message,… Hope is certainly “the light”. The angel and the place are stuning… Much love and best wishes, dear Inese. Happy December & holidays (in advace!) โค

  5. The contrast of the angels colors against the fog is jaw-dropping, not to mention the realization: I was there! I was actually in this place once! Back when I visited Ireland for a few weeks of summer study, I managed to reach Kilkenney Castle! I didn’t have enough money to go inside, but I remember those grounds, and the power in the height of stone.

    1. So exciting! I am absolutely delighted that I posted something related to your memories. I will share some pictures later on. I haven’t been in the castle many years, and decided to visit again in July. They didn’t have guided tours and I enjoyed roaming the castle at my own pace.

  6. Another very unique blog. I wish I could have seen the Angels – it reminds me of the painted pigs throughout Bath in England when I visited a while ago. Loved the foggy images – I never seem to be in the right place to get this effect. Hope you feel better soon!

    1. Oh I remember the pigs. We had a good couple of them in Dublin. I will upload a picture. Then there were cows, before the pigs, all over Europe.
      Sometimes we have fog from morning till night. I think it was one of those days ๐Ÿ™‚

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