“Nothing Odd Will Do Long” – Lawrence Sterne Memorial, Clonmel

Lawrence Sterne of Tristram Shandy fame was born in Clonmel in 1713. Spending only a few months of infancy there, he is nevertheless commerorated by two memorials in the town – one a plaque on the West Gate, another being , “Nothing Odd Will Do Long” designed by Ron van der Noll and sculpted by Bobby Blunt, and installed in its current location in 2012 following damage at its original site.

From a distance the memorial consists of four pillars, one of which is taller than the other:

Approaching one sees the smaller pillars have some kind of odd motif on top

Look through a peephole in the larger pillar… and it all comes together:

.. a portrait of the author!


Happy Real Bread Week to (and with) the Auld Mill Bakery in Grangemockler

It is Real Bread Week. As I am sure you knew. The Real Bread Campaign is encouraging people to bake their own, or to buy additive free locally made loaves. This TripAdvisor review captures it well:

It seems appropriate to celebrate a local bakery which is somewhat atypical of Ireland. The Auld Mill in Grangemockler, which is on the N76 Clonmel-Kilkenny road, has the air of a boulangerie in a French village:

Stopped at this bakery out of sheer curiosity and had a toasted sandwich and tea. The bread was freshly baked and was delicious. It was a spelt bread, light yet hearthy, not dense and heavy like other spelt breads I have tried. The quality of the bread was very, very good. The baker sells fresh loaves of bread also and can slice them for you.
We took home a currant loaf, kind of like and old-fashioned Maderia cake but with raisins. It was moist, not too sweet, and it was hard not to have a second (um, er, third) slice with a cuppa.
We also got a cream coffee slice and just, wow, did not expect light, airy, flaky, perfectly baked puff pastry, but that’s what we got. Normally cream cakes look nicer than they are, you bite into them only to get a waxy, flat pastry and a greasy bite of cream, but not here. The icing, pastry, and cream on this coffee slice were all spot on.
I bake at home, and while I am an amateur I know when something is done right. The Auld Mill does it right. Will be back again, and again. Highly recommend.

The lost worlds of Debois and Julieta Guipeal at the Tipperary County Museum

The lost worlds of Debois and Julieta Guipeal at the Tipperary County Museum

This is Portrait of a Man, by Julieta Guipeal:


Apologies for the photo quality – this was taken with my phone’s camera in a well-lit (and thereby reflective) space.

It is currently on display as part of an exhibition called Reflections in Tipperary County Museum, Clonmel. Here is a bit of background on the exhibition:

Earlier this year [2018], Tipperary County Museum initiated a vital research project which focused on the origins of its municipal art collection. Art Historian, Catherine Marshall was appointed Curator in Residence at Tipperary County Museum to oversee this particular project. The result of Catherine’s findings will be documented in a specialised catalogue in early 2019 and the accompanying exhibition ‘Reflections’ will exhibit approximately 65 paintings which have remained unseen by the general public for many years.

This Tipperary Art Collection is the result of active, committed and sustained citizenship by a small group of people, from those who established the South Tipperary Fine Arts Club in the 1940s, to individual donors like William English in the 1980s and more recently Tipperary County Council S.R., South Tipperary County Council and our now unified Tipperary County Council.

Portrait of an Artist and others of the most interesting works (including “F***lands 1982”) are part of the William English Bequest. I haven’t been able to find out much about William English online (possibly because there is an artist of that name) this article:

Subsequently, the original collection was added-to by a number of bequests, the most notable of which came from Clonmel man, William English. This brought relatively modern artists (working in the late decades of the 20th century) into the gallery: Robert Ballagh, Patrick Pye, Leo Hogan, Julieta Guipeal, and the Clonmel-born artist, Martin Quigley.

The above article by Margaret Rossiter is the only online reference to Julieta Guipeal I could find.  The catalogue for the exhibition states “All attempts to find the artist Julieta Guipeal have so far come to nothing. While almost all of the William English Bequest was acquired in the Limerick area, enquiries about Guipeal there have yielded no information, nor have early international searches”:


Here is another, unfortunately blurry, view of Portrait of A Man:

Julieta Guipeal is not the only lost artist on display. Here is a work whose very title is a mystery. Is it  EA or A1/2?  We known it is signed by “Debois”, but who is Debois? Again, apologies for the quality:


Here is the image in a bit more context with a great big stonking reflection of myself hogging the frame:

While in Guipeal’s case one can make assumptions (possibly misleading ones) about gender and possible ethnicity, in Debois’ case we have even less to go on. As the catalogue states “No information has come to light about the artist who signed this work, Debois, and no indications of how William English came across his or his work. That is all the more intriguing since the work itself is so tantalisingly dreamlike and surreal”:



So there you have it – I have posted before here about the amnesia of our supposedly information-saturated age., and here we have two intriguing works, each by an artist apparently unknown for anything else.