Pictured here the government buildings on Upper Merrion Street, central Dublin.
This dramatic Edwardian Baroque complex of buildings is arranged around a central quadrangle. Visible in the shot here is the collosal ionic portico and the dome which faces onto the street, and is the backdrop for many Irish news articles concerning politics of the state.
Contruction began in 1904 and the site was chosen partly because of the desire in Dublin to create a block of prestigious cultural, government and educational buildings, similar to the institutions of South Kensington. As it is situated by the Natural history museum and the museum of Science and art (Now the National Museum of Ireland), if fit the bill perfectly.
The architects of the complex were London man Aston Webb and Dubliner Thomas Manly Deane.
The foundation stone was laid in 1904 and, while architect Aston Webb got on with the business of designing the complex, concern began to be expressed about what Irish materials should be used in its construction. When the preliminary designs became available in 1905 it was obvious that a combination of granite and Portland stone, already in use on the facades of Admiralty Arch, would be employed. Concern grew until the architects were obliged to give an undertaking that four fifths of all building materials would be Irish. Portland stone would be used only in the decorative facings of the buildings. Granite for the rest was selected from the Ballyknocken quarries in Wicklow.
The balancing north and south wings, intended to house departments of the British administration, were completed in March 1922. To allow for the eventual building of these wings the townhouses which originally fronted the site were acquired by compulsory purchase order. DATI, as well as the Board of Works, occupied the townhouses until 1913 when, building having at last progressed to this outer periphery, they were demolished. In all, eighteen four-storey over basement houses were pulled down to makeway for the additional blocks. Ironically, Thomas Manly Deane had offices in one of the houses which had to be demolished.
The interior of the building is a tribute to Irish art and furniture making. There are marble floors, richly woven carpets and rich furnishings. One of the most notable items to see here is the glorious stained glass window entitled "my four green fields" and designed by artist Evie Hone. It dates from 1939 when it was commissioned for the Irish governments pavillion at the Worlds Fair in New York. The window also resided in the CIE offices in Dublin for many years before being meticulously taken apart, cleaned and releaded and fitted in its present home.
The exterior of the complex also features beautiful carved sculptures, some are visible in this shot.
The cost of the original complex was 225,000 pounds. The cost of its rennovation in 1990 was 17.4 million pounds.
Thanks for looking!
Critiques | Translate
lousat (94786) 2012-10-29 9:53
Hi Noel,a perfect simmetry and a great great capture,the best light to create this magnificent contrast between facades and blue sky,a magnificent way to take this important architechture,i like it! Have a nice evening and thanks,Luciano
pajaran (63506) 2012-10-29 10:25
Vrlo interesantan i dobar tekst, o vladinoj zgradi, i istorija ...
Dobra ostrina i kontrast, lepe boje.
Dobra kompozicija, lep trenutak sa senkom.
Sve najbolje u novoj nedelji koja je pocela.
Very interesting and good text, the government building, and the history of ...
Good sharpness and contrast, beautiful color.
Good composition, beautiful moment with a shadow.
All the best in the new week that started.
mkamionka (39191) 2012-10-29 13:04
great idea. I know I repeat it so often under your photos but this is something what I have approached really many times also because it is a great architecture and not a very popular view of Dublin. I was however never happy with the results, I tried always to focus on the internal part but I see the trick was to actually take a wide composition to make it work and to show the whole context.
I really like it.
Sonata11 (33969) 2012-10-29 19:50
wonderful presentation of architecture against beautiful blue sky. Great symmerty, colors, sharpness, clarity, perfect POV. I really love it. Thanks for sharing.
All the best,
dkmurphys (62081) 2012-10-30 1:45
Very fine capture of the impressive building. I like the architecture, an attractive classical postcard. Well taken!
kordinator (21295) 2012-10-30 1:59
Beautiful architecture from Dablin.
The composition is excellent.
saxo042 (37910) 2012-10-30 7:46
A good POV and a pleasantly symmetric view of these impressive white buildings against the clear blue sky. A very interesting and long note too!
krzychu30 (15512) 2012-10-30 9:58
brilliant presentation of this impressive buildings complex.In this case the weather and clear sky is crucial for this scene.The white facade looks fabulous against blue sky-the contrast is eye-catching.It´s excellently composed scene with really well kept symmetry.
Have a nice evening
JFS (32459) 2012-10-30 11:17
Another beautiful day in Dublin! Pure symmetry and splendid contrast between the magnificent building and the vivid blue sky.
All the best!
carlo62 (52142) 2012-10-30 16:50
bella inquadratura per questa architettura candida contro lo splendido cielo. Mi piace la presenza delle persone, si capiscono le dimensioni della costruzione.
delpeoples (59186) 2012-11-01 20:44
As Mariusz said, this is a building I've walked past, completely forgetting how beautiful and impressive it is. And what a superb photo, you really have demonstrated its grandeur and class, aswell as the impressive architectural details. The note is first class too - wow, 225k versus 17.5 mill - now that's inflation for you!
abmdsudi (56348) 2012-11-02 3:50
Another good architectural shot, It's high striking contrast but I love the shadow areas with the glimpse of the fig in the darkness to emphasize the strength of the composition, and by farming the buildings centrally. A delightful historic structures filled with bright colours, the glorious detail and delicacy amaze me particularly good with the light catching on the facade with interesting mix between the repeated lines, shapes and patterns. An awesome piece of architectural shot Noel, Well done.
ourania (48802) 2012-11-20 12:19
your upward point of view and symmentrical composition have created an effective presentation of the architecture with great depth and attractive perspective. Sharpness, lighting, strong colours and contrasts are marvellous and have offered a fascinating graphic quality that enhances the dramatic aspect of the baroque architecture mentioned in your note. I absolutely love the contrasts and the way the shadows seem to be creeping upwards from the bottom of the frame. Congratulations and thank you!
All the best, have a great evening,
bornav (486) 2012-11-29 22:11
This is a beautiful architectural photograph. The contrast between the sky and the colour of the buildings are great. The symmetry is perfect and the image is very well detailed!
Kamilutka (8107) 2013-01-10 8:25
I like the perspective from the POV you chose. Nice depth and good contrast between buildings and bright blue sky. Very good sharpness!
Greetings from Greece
serp2000 (45072) 2014-03-13 22:17
I see your government has got tastefulness, wonderful style, the elegant details of the Baroque architecture.
I also like this grey blue combination, perfect sharpness. Thanks for sharing!
Have a great Friday,14 ;)
- Copyright: Noel Byrne (Noel_Byrne) (32542)
- Genre: Places
- Medium: Color
- Date Taken: 2012-10-27
- Categories: Daily Life, Ceremony, Architecture, Artwork
- Exposure: f/10.0, 1/200 seconds
- More Photo Info: view
- Photo Version: Original Version
- Date Submitted: 2012-10-29 8:18