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Monday 13 April 2015

The Marriage Equality Referendum - Street Art Edition.

I hadn’t seen too much street art for the referendum until today apart from ADW’s South William piece but I came across a couple more today so I thought it would be a good idea to put them in one place as an initial marker. 

We’ve got just under 40 days to go and I’m reaching the end of my tether with the shower of Vote No proponents who are being endlessly wheeled out by the Media for “balance”. Frankly I’d be happier if we started to see some No people being direct and saying they just thought that “the gays are disgusting” because at least they would be coming clean about what’s really bothering them. That would be awfully bigoted and nasty but it would at least be honest. Instead they are just full of dissembling bullshit, jumping through logical contortions in order to come up with a way of denying they are homophobic or bigoted while also insisting that only good clean hetero Christians can get married. And if I hear another idiotic “What about the children” argument I’m likely to throw my radio or TV out the bleeding window.

Still with that a fact of life for the next six weeks at least the street art has started to appear.

First up on my list at any rate is ADW’s doorway for the South William bar ( from last week ) and a new piece by Novice that went up sometime over the weekend beside The Bernard Shaw in Portobello.


Both are cool and very, very welcome but are dwarfed by Joe Caslin’s four storey wheat paste on South Great George’s Street, on the corner of Dame street. This was causing traffic jams this morning because everyone was trying to get a picture. If you chose to measure the success of a piece of art by how many people it stopped in their tracks this would be quickly on it’s way to being the greatest piece of contemporary work by anyone.



Joe Caslin has said that the arrangement was inspired by Frederic William Burton’s Hellelil and Hildebrand, The Meeting on the Turret Stairs which was crowned Ireland’s favourite work of art a couple of years back. At the time I was a bit miffed that it beat out Harry Clarke’s The Eve of St Agnes but I think I’m finally prepared to accept that this might have been a better choice than mine.


George Eliot, a woman who knew her fair share about battling against prejudice the cruelty of fate said of Burton’s painting that “‘the face of the knight is the face of a man to whom the kiss is a sacrament.” Joe Caslin seems to have nailed that essential aspect in his version too. Personally I quite like that phrasing here, it reclaims the true nature of what a sacrament should be. Apparently Joe Caslin is planning another similar piece that will feature two women. I can’t wait. 

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