Saturday, 15 October 2016

Along the Grand Canal...

Since a few months I am cycling along the Grand Canal at least four times a day... new daily routine related to father's duties ;) 
I have a chance to observe surrounding of the Canal in more details than before and in various light. My eyes are focused mainly on architecture of course. It nicely shows how buildings are changing, how its shapes and character transforms in different light. It can be truly fascinating. Believe me ;)

Two buildings caught my attention - Fitzwilton House on Wilton Place and then former Bord Fáilte headquarters  (Irish Tourist Board) at the junction of Lower Baggot Street and Wilton Terrace. I know them very well as I was working for a few years in this area in my so called previous life. after many moths of concentrating mainly on commercial part of photography and small jobs related to my Darkroom Service I decided to dust off my good reliable Sinar. Going big - the best choice.

Now I had a possibility to look at them through the lens of my camera.

It was also a good chance to check equipment and my own performance after such a long break. And what can I say? All works well and that’s the most important thing :)

I made first few photographs on Direct Positive Paper. Got only one good image which is not bad at all. On Monday morning I returned for more. This time with FP4+ loaded into holders and some more paper as well. 
My 'models' are really important from architectural heritage point of view as they may be gone pretty soon…as many other modernist objects from that period in Dublin. 
Both completely different in scale and both quite a tricky subjects to photograph due to some heavy traffic on Wilton Terrace at the time of the day when I could do my work. Bus stops and bus parking along the street didn’t make it easy as well.

At this stage I would like to push a bit my project ‘Unfulfilled Dreams’ which was on hold since almost the beginning of the year. It's a pity that sometimes it is so difficult to obtain a permission to get inside, if possible at all. That’s why I decided to change tactic, approach many structures in a different way and focus on external parts first instead of interiors. 
I will be very happy to come back and finish it out with interior photography as well but that's a next stage.

Fitzwilton House was designed by architects Emanuel Shoolheifer and Don Burley (hired by Ronald Lyon Estates) for Sir Basil Goulding and completed in 1969.  
It is an immense concrete structure but at the same time fragile in its visual perception.
Very complex facade made of few different concrete finishes creates sort of sceleton which makes all building invisible.
Nine storey tower with smaller, three storey base surrounded by carpark.
Very fine example of modernism in Ireland in my opinion.

In June 2016, planning permission was granted for its demolition...

Bord Fáilte headquarters, another architectural treasure, was designed by Robin Walker (of later Michael Scott & Partners) in 1961.  Robin Walker was the only Irish architect who worked for le Corbusier and studied under the direction of Mies van der Rohe. 

This very unique and beautiful in its simplicity structure is now for sale as a potential development site...

I just wanted to write something about it but doing research I found perfect article written last year by Robin Walker's son Simon Walker... I woudn't be able to explain it better. 
Just click HERE please to read it. 

At the end some technicalities of course.

All was photographed with Sinar F2 4x5 large format camera with Schneider Kreuznach Super Angulon 90/8 lens and Ilford FP4+ 4x5 sheet film.

Some photographs were made on Ilford/Harman Direct Positive Paper. I presented one of them on social media a few days ago. The rest will be shown in the same way so please follow me on FB, Twitter, Linkedin or Instagram.

Also please have a look at recently reorganised and updated 'Unfulfilled Dreams' gallery ...important Irish modernist buildings (just click gallery title please).

Thank you!

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