An Ode to Irish Art

St. Patrick’s day celebrations are certainly underway. Every pub full of music, laughter and joy. With many pints of Guinness and shots of Jameson no doubt, being poured. Well, to accompany your plates full of corned beef, bangers, and mash; a visual feast of Irish art and artifacts.

From ancient times to today, here is a mini timeline of Ireland’s art history.

Early Irish Art:

Mostly all utilitarian objects, made by skilled craftsmen, these early artifacts were made from natural materials such as stone, bronze, iron, and later gold. The age of kings, queens, and vikings, many of these objects such as brooches, rings, and swords were highly decorated with elaborate engravings of Celtic knots and filigrees.

The Age of Enlightenment/ Victorian Era/ Industrial Revolution:

Fast forward quite a bit. Jewelry, paintings, castles, and fairytale illustrations from the 1700’s – early 1900’s paint a classic and quintessential portrait of Ireland as a land of green pastures, rich folklore, and sheep.



Modern Times / Today:

The harsh seas, cold wind, rain, and old age harden people, as well as art it seems. A not so pastoral, but perhaps a more “real” portrait of Ireland is depicted by modern and contemporary artists. Giving meaning to the Irish blessing, “May you always be blessed with walls for the wind. A roof for the rain. [and] A warm cup of tea by the fire…”

To everyone, have a happy St. Patrick’s Day!


One comment on “An Ode to Irish Art

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