The Wicklow Lighthouse
<ul><li>Built sometime in 1790’s, Wicklow Lighthouse is a seamark. It’s the only place in Wicklow that I have any connecti...
 
 
<ul><li>Shortly after it was built a heavy fog descended on the sea and it was clear that this lighthouse didn’t work as l...
 
 
<ul><li>Thinking about the lighthouse – as an object in space, one might find resonance with Jean Baudrillard’s ideas in h...
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Wicklow Lighthouse by C Shaffrey

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Wicklow Lighthouse by C Shaffrey

  1. 1. The Wicklow Lighthouse
  2. 2. <ul><li>Built sometime in 1790’s, Wicklow Lighthouse is a seamark. It’s the only place in Wicklow that I have any connection to – if you don’t count a few friends living in Bray. It was the last building my mother worked on before she died. So inspite of its strong form, its sheer mass, its geometric elegance - like that of of 15 th century Italian campanile - inspite of its absolute presence in the landscape, it will always be for me, a reminder of absence. </li></ul>
  3. 5. <ul><li>Shortly after it was built a heavy fog descended on the sea and it was clear that this lighthouse didn’t work as lighthouse. So it was closed down and became defunct. It was a functional object that didn’t work. </li></ul><ul><li>They built two other lighthouses nearby – so there is an unusual little collection of lighthouses here (on Dunbar Head). They didn’t knock the first lighthouse down, perhaps because it was so striking and it had by then become a landmark. And, even though it was more or less useless, it was still visible from sea in good weather. Now it has been turned into a Landmark Trust House, where you can go and stay, (that was the job my mother did). Clean up the stone; fix the roof and repair it’s broken parts; and then she put a kitchen in its roof and bedrooms in its tower. </li></ul>
  4. 8. <ul><li>Thinking about the lighthouse – as an object in space, one might find resonance with Jean Baudrillard’s ideas in his book System of Objects (where he analyses singular objects e.g. mirrors, clocks, lighting, seating, antiques to give maddening and provocative insights into modern society and one’s place in it). In this landscape (Wicklow) objects, markers, sites are sources of iconic and elusive dimensions. These are places or things, that bring up other places and things. Like the lighthouse that doesn’t function as a lighthouse (its site set back from the sea is subject to fog), is a memory for me. </li></ul>

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