Nicola Gordon Bowe, ‘Wilhelmina Geddes, Harry Clarke and their part in the Arts and Crafts Movement of Ireland’, in The Journal of Decorative and Propaganda Arts [DAPA], No. 8, (Miami 1988). [typescript copy supplied by author].

Jeanne Sheehy, The Rediscovery of Ireland’s Past: The Celtic Revival 1830-1930 (London 1980).

Yeats wanted Ireland to “recreate the ancient arts as they were understood when they moved a whole people and not a few, who have grown up in a leisured class and made this understanding their business.” Ireland the the Arts, in United Irishman, 1901.

AE: “O, stay, departing glory, stay with us but a day/And burning seraphim shall leap from our clay,/And plumed and creted hosts shall shine where men have been,/Heaven hold no lordlier court than earth at College Green.” “The City”, in The Irish Review, A Monthly Magazine of Irish Literature, Art and Science, ed. Padraic Colum, vol 3, no 29 (1913).

Maste book-binder Sri Edward Sullivan, Bart (c.1851-1937).

The search for a specifically Irish idiom inevitably led to the widespread and often indiscriminate use of Celtic ornament. [Examples at exhibitions of 1988 and 1901] were generally criticised for “lack of good design and sold adherence to old dogmas” … the same critic noted the lack of application of original thought to the vital element of design and deared that “the faintest breath of the new spirit in art has still to reach” most exhibitors. While there were “any number of tankards that Cuchulainns might have drunk mead from”, there was little cohesive synthesis of form, function, and decoration in useful everyday objects. By 1904 the third, much smaller and predominantly contemporary Irish exhibition reflected advances … . The material quoted is from TW Rolleston, in The Studio, vol 26, 1902, p.295, and the Arts & Craft Society’s third Journal. [2-3]

Gordon-Bowe, The Dublin Arts and Crafts Movement 1885-1930 (Edinburgh 1985); also ‘Women and the Artst and Crafts Revival in Irelan, c.1886-1930, in Irish Women Artists, NGI (Dublin 1987).

Clarke’s Hans Andersen illustrations were commissioned by George Harrpa and successfully published in 1916. This led to the “flesh-creeping” Poe illustrations (in 1919 and 1923), a poetry anthology, The year’s at the Spring, Perrault’s Fairy Tales, and Geoethe’s Faust for Harrap and a Swinburne for Bodley Head. Brentano and Mead & Co. published American eds., as did a number of pirate printers.

Clarke’s window commissioned by Irish Govt for staircase of League of Nations building in Geneva, rejected as unsuitable, and sold back to his widow. It was exhibited in the Style of Empire exhibition (exhibit. No. 159) of the Mitchell Wolfson Jr. collection for DAPA, Miami, 1985-6. [n. 30, 12] A few years earlier he also made a stain glass window for the Jacobs family in Dublin, with “the only proviso that he might incorporate the ideas of Night and Morning, Summer and Winter. (Report in Irish Times, 9th & 11th Aug. 1924.) [13]

Stephen Gwynn, ‘The Art of Miss WM Geddes’, in The Studio, vol 84, no. 355 (Oct 1922) [”a real glory of reds and blues … gift or the simple rendering of essential action which seems to have come straight out of the Middle Ages.”]

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