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Overview

The Crawford Gallery building is an important historic building, parts of which date back to the early eighteenth century. The building is comprised of three different building phases: The building which now houses the Crawford Art Gallery, erected in 1724, as Cork´s Custom House recalls the ties between commercial success and the development Cork city in the early eighteenth and nineteenth century. In 1830 the old Custom House building was given to the Royal Cork Institution, (a forerunner of the present University College Cork) with the object of ‘diffusing knowledge and the application of science to the common purposes in life.´

A new house was built at this time to accommodate the rapidly expanding port operations. The building became a Government School of Design in 1850 and part of the South Kensington School system some years later.

A magnificent extension, housing studios and galleries, was added in 1884 to accommodate the growing number of students, at the expense of William Horatio Crawford, after whom it was named the Crawford School of Art. The conversion of the building into a School of Art and Gallery in the early nineteenth century was the first step to the establishment of art collection. When the School of Art relocated to its current premises in 1979, the building became the home for the Crawford Art Gallery.

In 2000, the Crawford Gallery further expanded its gallery space by creating a new exhibition wing of contemporary art designed by Dutch architect Erick van Egeraat and funded by the Department of Arts and Heritage. This new expansion has created 1000 square meters of additional exhibition space with which the Gallery has been able to present a broader, more contemporary spectrum of work to visitors.

The Crawford Art Gallery´s art collection was formed in 1819, when a set of Graeco-Roman and Neo-Classical sculpture casts were presented to the Cork Society of Arts. This collection was quickly augmented with works by students and teachers of the Cork School of Art, formed that same year: the students included Samuel Forde, Daniel Maclise and John Hogan. In 1825, the collection was moved to its present building, the former Custom House of Cork. The old Custom House provided a home for the Royal Cork Institution, the body that had taken over responsibility for the art collection, between 1825 and 1849. With the founding of a university in Cork, responsibility for the art collection was transferred to the Cork Government School of Design, established in 1850, that continued to occupy the old Custom House. In 1884, a new extension was added to the building, providing purpose-built galleries for exhibiting paintings and sculptures. Renamed the Crawford School of Art, the art collection, used also as an adjunct to the teaching of art, continued to grow, under the stewardship of the Technical Instruction Committee.

The collection was augmented with the purchase of works by Irish artists, many of them staff or graduates of the Cork School of Art. This pattern continued through the twentieth century, although there were several developments, notably the bequest of funds for the purchase of works for the collection by Joseph Stafford Gibson in 1919. This fund was used through the mid-20th century to acquire a sizeable collection of mainly academic paintings.

In 1930, the Technical Instruction Committee was replaced by the Vocational Education Committee, and the City of Cork VEC continued through the twentieth century as owners and managers of the building. The Arts Council introduced a joint-purchase scheme in the late 1960s, under which a number of mainly contemporary works were purchased by the Gallery. The Friends of the Crawford Art Gallery have supported acquisitions for the permanent collection over two decades. Private donations of works, such as the Seamus Murphy sculpture collection, will continue to form an important part of the Gallery´s acquisition strategy in the future, although such acquisitions need to be guided by this policy document.

In 2006, a new company was established by the Minister of Arts, Sport and Tourism to manage the Gallery, and the Gallery designated a National Cultural Institution. The School of Art had long since moved (in 1979) to a different building, and in 2007 the administrative offices of the City of Cork VEC were also transferred to new premises nearby. The Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht now provides an annual grant in aid that enables the purchase of a small number of significant works, both of historic and contemporary art. The legislation Section 1003 of the Finance Act, through providing income tax relief on works donated to the Crawford and other National Cultural Institutions, has become an important avenue for acquisitions to the permanent collection.

The permanent collection of the Crawford Art Gallery has grown steadily in recent years. It is strongest in 20th century and contemporary Irish art. In 1990 the collection numbered some 1500 paintings sculptures, prints and other works of art. These works were listed in the Illustrated Summary Catalogue, published in 1992. Since that date, over 3,000 new works have been added to the collection, which now contains almost 4,000 items.

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Forbhreathnú

Is foirgneamh stairiúil tábhachtach é foirgneamh Ghailearaí Crawford, agus tá codanna de a théann siar go dtí tús an ochtú haois déag. Trí chéim éagsúla tógála atá san fhoirgneamh: An foirgneamh ina bhfuil Gailearaí Ealaíne Crawford, foirgneamh a tógadh i 1724 mar an Teach Custaim i gCorcaigh, foirgneamh a thugann chun cuimhne an nasc é idir rath tráchtála Chathair Chorcaí agus forbairt na cathrach céanna i dtús an ochtú haois déag agus an naoú haois déag. Sa bhliain 1830 tugadh seanfhoirgneamh an Tí Custaim don Royal Cork Institution (roimh Choláiste na hOllscoile, Corcaigh) ar mhaithe le ‘heolas a scaipeadh agus eolaíocht a chur i bhfeidhm ar na cuspóirí coitianta sa saol.’

Tógadh Teach Custaim nua chun freastal ar na hoibríochtaí calafoirt a raibh méadú ag teacht orthu sa tréimhse seo. Is Government School of Design a rinneadh den fhoirgneamh sa bhliain 1850 agus ba chuid é sin de chóras South Kensington School roinnt blianta ina dhiaidh sin.

Síneadh mór, stiúideonna tithíochta agus gailearaithe a cuireadh leis an teach i 1884 chun freastal ar líon na mac léinn a bhí ag méadú leis, agus ba é William Horatio Crawford a d’íoc an costas, Crawford School of Design á thabhairt air ina ómós ina dhiaidh sin. Ba é an chéad chéim i dtreo Scoil Ealaíne agus Gailearaí ná bailiúchán ealaíne a bhunú go luath sa naoú haois déag. I 1979 nuair a d’athlonnaigh an School of Art go dtí an t-áitreabh atá anois ann, ba é Gailearaí Ealaíne Crawford a rinneadh de.

Sa bhliain 2000, chuir Gailearaí Crawford sciathán nua le haghaidh taispeántais ealaíne comhaimseartha lena spás gailearaí, agus ba é an t-ailtire Ollannach Erick van Egeraat a dhear, é maoinithe ag an Roinn Ealaíon agus Oidhreachta. Chruthaigh an leathnú nua seo 1000 m2 de spás taispeána breise agus leis an spás sin bhí an Gailearaí ábalta speictream níos leithne níos comhaimseartha oibre a chur i láthair na gcuairteoirí ann.

Bunaíodh bailiúchán ealaíne Gailearaí Crawford i 1819, nuair a tugadh sraith múnlaí dealbh Graeco-Rómhánacha agus Nua-Chlasaiceacha don Cork Society of Arts. Is gearr ina dhiaidh sin a cuireadh isteach sa bhailiúchán saothair ó mhic léinn agus ó mhúinteoirí an Cork School of Art a bunaíodh an bhliain chéanna: i measc na mac léinn bhí Samuel Forde, Daniel Maclise agus John Hogan. I 1825, aistríodh an bailiúchán go dtí an foirgneamh atá ann faoi láthair, an tIar-Theach Custaim i gCorcaigh. An Royal Cork Institution, an comhlacht a ghlac freagracht as an mbailiúchán ealaíne, chuir an Sean-Teach Custaim baile ar fáil di idir 1825 agus 1849. Nuair a bunaíodh ollscoil i gCorcaigh, aistríodh an fhreagracht as an mbailiúchán ealaíne an chuig Cork Government School of Design a bunaíodh sa bhliain 1850 agus a bhí fós i seilbh an tSean-Tí Custaim. I 1884, cuireadh síneadh nua leis an bhfoirgneamh, agus leis sin bhí gailearaithe saintógtha ar fáil chun pictiúir agus dealbha a chur ar taispeáint. Crawford School of Design ab ea an t-ainm nua, agus bhí an bailiúchán ealaíne in úsáid mar thaca chun an ealaín a theagasc, fás de shíor ag teacht air faoi mhaoirseacht an Technical Instruction Committee.

Cuireadh leis an mbailiúchán nuair a ceannaíodh saothair a rinne ealaíontóirí Éireannacha, cuid mhaith acu ina mbaill den fhoireann nó ina gcéimithe de chuid Cork School of Art. Lean an patrún seo ar aghaidh tríd an bhfichiú haois, ach bhí roinnt forbairtí ann, go háirithe Joseph Stafford Gibson agus é ag tiomnú cistí chun saothair a cheannach le haghaidh an bhailiúcháin i 1919. Baineadh úsáid as an gciste seo ar feadh an 20ú haois chun bailiúchán suntasach pictiúir a cheannach, ar pictiúir acadúla iad den chuid is mó.

I 1930, tháinig an Vocational Education Committee in áit an Technical Instruction Committee, agus tríd an bhfichiú lean an City of Cork VEC ar aghaidh ina n-úinéirí agus ina mbainisteoirí ar an bhfoirgneamh. Thug an Chomhairle Ealaíon scéim ceannaigh chomhpháirtigh isteach ag deireadh na 1960idí, agus is tríd an scéim sin a cheannaigh an Gailearaí roinnt saothar ar saothair chomhaimseartha den chuid is mó iad. Tá Cairde Ghailearaí Ealaíne Crawford ag tacú le héadálacha le haghaidh an bhuanbhailiúchán le fiche bliain anuas. Tabhartais phríobháideacha de shaothar, ar nós bhailiúchán dealbh Seamus Murphy, leanfaidh siad de bheith ina gcuid thábhachtach de straitéis sealbhaithe an Ghailearaí amach anseo, cé gur gá éadálacha den sórt sin a threorú leis an gcáipéis polasaí seo.

Bhunaigh an tAire Ealaíon, Spóirt agus Turasóireachta cuideachta nua chun an Gailearaí a bhainistiú, agus ainmníodh an Gailearaí mar Fhoras Cultúrtha Náisiúnta. Is fada (sa bhliain 1979) ó bhí An Scoil Ealaíne tar éis bogadh chuig foirgneamh eile, agus in 2007 aistríodh oifigí riaracháin Coiste Ceardoideachais Chathair Chorcaí chuig áitreabh nua in aice láimhe. Cuireann an Roinn Ealaíon, Oidhreachta agus Gaeltachta deontas bliantúil ar fáil anois chun cabhrú le líon beag saothar suntasach a cheannach, idir saothair ealaíne stairiúla agus saothair ealaíne chomhaimseartha. Faoi Rannóg Reachtaíochta 1003 den Acht Airgeadais, cuirtear faoiseamh ó cháin ioncaim ar fáil i dtaca le saothair a dheonaítear do Ghailearaí Crawford agus d’Fhorais Chultúrtha Náisiúnta eile, agus is tábhachtach an chonair é sin maidir le héadalacha a fháil le haghaidh an bhuanbhailiúcháin.

Tá méadú leanúnach tagtha ar bhuanbhailiúchán Ghailearaí Ealaíne Crawford le blianta beaga anuas. Is i dtaca leis an 20ú haois agus leis an ealaín chomhaimseartha is fearr é. Sa bhliain 1990 bhí tuairim is 1500 ceann de phictiúir, de dhealbha, de phriontaí agus de shaothair ealaíne eile sa bhailiúchán. Liostaíodh na saothair seo sa Chatalóg Achoimre Mhaisithe a foilsíodh i 1992. Ón dáta sin i leith, tá os cionn 3,000 saothar nua curtha leis an mbailiúchán ina bhfuil beagnach 4,000 mír anois.

Ar ais go barr

Crawford Family

Crawford Family at Lakelands (detail) A.A. Edouart

Crawford Family at Lakelands (detail) A.A. Edouart

The Crawford family, brewers and merchants were responsible for many improvements in Cork during the nineteenth century, although today the family name lives on in Cork only in the names of streets and those institutions they helped found. The present day Cork brewing firm of Beamish & Crawford has long since passed out of family ownership. The Crawford's would have been such a family as described by De Latocnaye, who visited Cork in 1796, dubbing it laconically, if rather uncharitably, 'the City of Yawns':

'this town is one of the richest and most commercial of Europe. The principal merchants are nearly all foreigners, Scotch for the most part, and in the short period of ten years are able sometimes to make large fortunes'

The Crawford family were Scottish, claiming their origins at Baidland, near Dalry in Ayrshire. A branch of the family were probably in Ireland as early as 1618. In 1625 it is recorded that Andrew Crawford, miller, was in possession, as tenant of Lord Clandeboye, of a manorial mill and lands in Co. Down. These lands were subsequently purchased by William Crawford from Lord Clanbrassil in 1670 and became known as the Crawfordburn estate. This estate continued in family ownership for 277 years, until 1947, when it was sold by the grandson of the last owner, Col. Robt. G. Sharman Crawford (d.1934). Branches of the family spread around the world to Vancouver, New Orleans and Melbourne; there was even a German branch of the family.

William Crawford I of Crawfordsburn had two sons, John and James. John had a daughter named Mabel, who married A. A. Willliam Sharman (thence the name Sharman Crawford). James Crawford had seven children, one of whom, William, came to Cork in 1792, founded the brewing firm along with William Beamish; and built the house 'Lakelands' near Blackrock. The Beamish and Crawford brewery was successful from the outset. Managers were brought over from London who were conversant with the latest technological developments in brewing, and the company quickly became the largest brewer in the country, employing nearly five hundred people in 1807. By 1834, one-eighth of the city's rates were being paid by this one company.

William Crawford II married, firstly, Elizabeth Cooke and after, Mary Uniacke. They had many children, including William Crawford 'the Younger', who married Dulcibella Morris of Dunkathel House in 1813, and died in 1840. John Hogan sculpted the monumental portrait of William the Younger in 1844, which stands in the Crawford Art Gallery today. It bears the Cork coat of arms on the base and an inscription praising William and his love for his native city - 'His heart throbbed for her prosperity'. Although William the Younger had been a founder of the original school of art in Cork, it was his son William Horatio (1812-1888), who was to become the great benefactor of the construction of the magnificent building which stands today as the Crawford Art Gallery. William Horatio Crawford spent much of his life working in the family firm, which he took over along with Richard Pigot Beamish at the end of the 1850s. He died unmarried on October 16 1888.

One of the last descendants of this branch of the family, Hugh Crawford, an architect with a practice in England, visited Cork on several occasions in the 1980s. Hugh Crawford compiled the family history on which the above account is partly based, also donating to the Gallery in 1987 a collection of portrait miniatures of the Crawford family. His account of the old family house is interesting:

'William Crawford Sr. must have been something of a Nabob in the 18th century manner, as near the house he had his own quay with a small warehouse. What he imported is uncertain, but he was said to have had interests in the West Indies. Possibly molasses were imported for the brewery, or perhaps only hops and barley. William had advanced and original ideas in the running of an estate; and probably also the brewery. It seems that he had a favourite red Magnolia tree (perhaps Camelia) and he had devised a system for bringing liquid manure from an adjoining yard (as the tree was planted against the wall) to fertilise the roots; he had also built a shelter around the trees with a seat where he would often sit looking out over the beautiful view. It is said that it was on this seat that he died. However, it is doubtful whether this story was about him or his son, perhaps the latter as the story is still remembered.'

William Horatio Crawford, and his contemporaries Richard Beamish and William Edward Gumbleton were eminent gardeners. Both Crawford and Gumbleton were bachelors and collected fine books, works of art and rare plants. Crawford, a reserved and dignified man, was described as of 'an ascetic temperament'. He was especially keen on growing tender shrubs and trees in greenhouses, and had at Lakelands a 'perfect arboretum...richly planted...with rare shrubs and trees'. Crawford's plantings included Himalayan and Andean specimens, such as magnolias, rhododendrons and cordylins. The Himalyan Magnolia campbelli was in Crawford's collection and flowered for the first time in the British Isles. Crawford was probably best known for this Brownea species, from which he produced several hybrids, some of which he bequeathed to the National Botanical Gardens in Dublin. This genus is native to the West Indies and cannot be cultivated outside in Britain or Ireland. In 1876, these plants grew to such a height in Crawford's greenhouses, that he had to raise the roof. Margaret Hill, of the well-known family of Cork architects, who studied at the Cork School of Art from 1857 to 1861, painted some of these plants for gardening magazines.

William Horatio had inherited Lakelands, an old house 'richly stored with rare books, paintings and engravings' from his father. Hugh Crawford recalls its end:

'The end of Lakelands was sad. Under circumstances no longer known, the property passed into the possession of a solicitor, possibly as a bad debt. The house was demolished by the new owner as he had ideas of turning the property into a race-course but was refused permission to do so. Until recently the property was owned by a farmer, who supplied some of the facts I have recorded. I believe that at least part of the site has now been built over. When the house was demolished extensive cellars were left closed up. Local people say that one contained a large collection of papers and documents which were allowed to be destroyed or dispersed, also a collection of fine wine. It was popularly believed that there was still one cellar which had never been opened. A few years ago investigations were made, but nothing was found.'

Today, the site at Lakelands is a field surrounded by suburban housing, overlooking Cork Harbour. Little remains of the house or its outbuildings apart from a vast stone-walled yard with a classical arched and pedimented gateway, bearing the date 1812. In the field, a group of gigantic monkey puzzle trees marks the site of the house itself, of which nothing remains other than some remnants of the cellars.Hugh Crawford died, sadly, in March 1989. The Crawford family is now extinct in Cork, since John Crawford, of London has passed away in 2007.

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Muintir Crawford

Muintir Crawford ag Lochlands (mionghné) A.A. Edouart

Muintir Crawford ag Lochlands (mionghné) A.A. Edouart

Muintir Crawford, idir ghrúdairí agus cheannaithe, is iad sin a rinne go leor feabhsuithe i gCorcaigh le linn an naoú haois déag, cé nach bhfuil an sloinne le fáil i gCorcaigh a thuilleadh ach in ainmneacha na sráideanna agus na n-institiúidí sin a raibh siad páirteach ina mbunú. An gnólacht grúdaireachta Corcaíoch Beamish & Crawford, is fada ó bhí sí faoi úinéireacht an teaghlaigh. Bheadh muintir Crawford cosúil le teaghlach den sórt ar a raibh cur síos ag De Latocnaye, fear a thug cuairt ar Chorcaigh sa bhliain 1796, agus a thug ‘the City of Yawns’ mar ainm gonta uirthi, ainm sórt dian.

‘tá an baile seo ar cheann de na bailte is saibhre agus is mó tráchtáil san Eoraip. Is eachtrannaigh iad na príomhcheannaithe ar fad geall leis, Scotaigh den chuid is mó, agus i dtréimhse ghearr deich mbliana éiríonn leo uaireanta saibhreas mór a dhéanamh'

Ba ó Albain iad muintir Crawford, de bhunadh Baidland in aice le Dail Ruighe i Siorrachd Inbhir Àir. Is dócha go raibh craobh den teaghlach in Éirinn chomh luath le 1618. I 1625 bhí cuntas ann go raibh Andrew Crawford, muilleoir, ina thionónta de chuid Tiarna Clandeboye, seilbh aige ar mhuileann mainéarach agus ar thailte i gCo. an Dúin. Cheannaigh William Crawford na tailte sin ina dhiaidh sin ón Tiarna Clanbrassil i 1670 agus tugadh eastát Crawfordburn orthu. Bhí an t-eastát seo faoi úinéireacht teaghlaigh ar feadh 277 bliain, go dtí 1947, nuair a dhíol garmhac an úinéara deiridh é, Col. Robt. G. Sharman Crawford (a cailleadh i 1934). Scaip craobhacha den teaghlach ar fud an domhain go Vancouver, New Orleans agus Melbourne; bhí brainse Gearmánach den teaghlach ann fiú.

Bhí beirt mhac ag William Crawford I Crawfordsburn, John agus James. Bhí iníon ag John darb ainm Mabel a phós A. Willliam Sharman (dá bhrí sin, an t-ainm Sharman Crawford). Bhí seachtar páistí ag James Crawford, duine díobh William, a tháinig go Corcaigh sa bhliain 1792 agus a bhunaigh an gnólacht grúdaireachta in éineacht le William Beamish; agus tógadh an teach ‘Lakelands’ in aice leis an gCarraig Dhubh. Bhí rath ar ghrúdlann Beamish & Crawford ón tús. Tugadh bainisteoirí anonn ó Londain a raibh cur amach acu ar na forbairtí teicneolaíochta is déanaí sa ghrúdaireacht, agus is gearr go raibh tháinig an chuideachta ar an ngrúdlann is mó sa tír, beagnach cúig chéad duine fostaithe inti i 1807. Faoi 1834, bhí an t-ochtú cuid de rátaí na cathrach á íoc ag an gcuideachta seo amháin.

Phós William Crawford II Elizabeth Cooke ar dtús agus ina dhiaidh sin, Mary Uniacke. Bhí go leor páistí acu, ina measc William Crawford ‘the Younger’ a phós Dulcibella Morris as Teach Dunkathel i 1813, agus a fuair bás sa bhliain 1840. Dhealbhaigh John Hogan portráid chuimhneacháin de William the Younger i 1844, í suite i nGailearaí Ealaíne Crawford sa lá atá inniu ann. Armas Chorcaí atá ar an mbonn agus tá inscríbhinn air ina moltar William agus a ghrá dá chathair dhúchais — ‘Bhí a chroí ag caitheamh i ndiaidh rath a bheith uirthi’. Cé go raibh William the Younger ar dhuine de na daoine a bhunaigh an chéad scoil ealaíne i gCorcaigh, ba é a mhac William Horatio (1812-1888) a bhí le bheith mar an tabharthóir mór maidir le tógáil an fhoirgnimh mhóir ar Gailearaí Ealaíne Crawford. Chaith William Horatio Crawford cuid mhór dá shaol ag obair sa ghnólacht teaghlaigh ar ar thóg sé ceann i gcomhar le Richard Pigot Beamish ag deireadh na 1850idí. Fuair sé bás gan phósadh ar 16 Deireadh Fómhair 1888.

Hugh Crawford, duine de shliocht deireanach na craoibhe seo den teaghlach agus ailtire le cleachtas i Sasana, thug sé cuairt ar Chorcaigh roinnt uaireanta sna 1980í. Chuir Hugh Crawford i dtoll a chéile an stair teaghlaigh ar a bhfuil an cuntas thuas páirtbhunaithe, agus thug sé bailiúchán mionphortráidí de Mhuintir Crawford don Ghailearaí freisin i 1987. Tá a chuntas ar sheanteach an teaghlaigh suimiúil:

'Caithfidh sé gur sórt Nabob a bhí in William Crawford Sr. sa 18ú haois, mar go raibh a ché féin in éineacht le trádstóras aige i ngiorracht don teach. Ní fios cé mhéad a d’allmhairigh sé, ach dúradh go raibh leasanna aige sna hIndiacha Thiar. D’fhéadfadh sé gur allmhairíodh molás le haghaidh na grúdlainne, nó leannlusanna agus eorna amháin b’fhéidir. Bhí smaointe forásacha nua ag William maidir le heastáit a rith; agus sa ghrúdlann freisin is dócha. Dealraíonn sé gurbh é an crann dearg Magnolia ab ansa leis (Camelia b’fhéidir) agus gur cheap sé córas chun aoileach leachtach a thabhairt ó chlós in aice láimhe (i gcoinne an bhalla a bhí an crann curtha) chun na fréamhacha a leasú; bhí foscadh tógtha aige timpeall na gcrann agus bhí suíochán aige ina suíodh sé go minic ag breathnú amach thar an radharc álainn. Deirtear gur ar an suíochán seo a fuair sé bás. Mar sin féin, tá amhras ann an leis féin nó lena mhac a bhain an scéal sin, an dara duine b’fhéidir mar tá bhfuil cuimhne ar an scéal go fóill. '

Ba gharraíodóirí iomráiteacha iad William Horatio Crawford, agus a chuid comhaoiseach Richard Beamish agus William Edward Gumbleton. Bhí Crawford agus Gumbleton araon ina mbaitsiléirí agus bhailigh siad leabhair fhíneáilte, saothair ealaíne agus plandaí neamhchoitianta. Ba dhuine discréideach díniteach é Crawford agus cuireadh síos air mar dhuine a raibh ‘meon aiséiteach’ aige. Bhí suim ar leith aige plandaí leochaileacha agus crainn a fhás i dtithe gloine, agus bhí ‘crannlann den chéad scoth aige...le toir agus crainn neamhchoitianta’ ag Lakelands. I bplandálacha Crawford bhí eiseamail aige ó na Himiléithe agus na hAindéis, amhail magnolia, ródaideandrón agus cordailín. Bhí Magnolia campbelli na Himiléithe i mbailiúchán Crawford agus is san Oileánra Breatnach a tháinig bláth air an chéad uair. Is dócha go raibh cáil ar Crawford mar gheall ar an speiceas Brownea seo, as ar tháirg sé roinnt hibridí, cuid acu a thiomnaigh sé chuig Garraithe Náisiúnta na Lus i mBaile Átha Cliath. Is géineas dúchasach de chuid na hIndiacha Thiar atá ann agus ní féidir é a shaothrú lasmuigh den Bhreatain ná d’Éirinn. Sa bhliain 1876, bhí na plandaí seo i dtithe gloine Crawford tar éis fás chomh hard go raibh air an díon a ardú. Margaret Hill de bhunadh teaghlaigh aitheanta ailtirí i gCorcaigh, rinne sí staidéar in Cork School of Art ó 1857 go 1861, agus rinne sí cuid de na plandaí seo a phéinteáil le haghaidh irisí garraíodóireachta.

Is óna athair a fuair William Horatio Lakelands ar oidhreacht, seanteach ‘ina raibh stór mór leabhar, pictiúr agus greantaí neamhchoitianta’ óna athair. Ba chuimhin le Hugh Crawford a dheireadh:

'Ba bhrónach an deireadh a bhí i ndán do Lakelands. Ar chúinsí nach eol a thuilleadh, tháinig an mhaoin isteach i seilbh aturnae, b’fhéidir mar dhrochfhiach. Scrios an t-úinéir an teach nua de bharr go raibh uaillmhian aige ráschúrsa a dhéanamh den mhaoin, ach níor éirigh leis cead a fháil chun é sin a dhéanamh. Ba le feirmeoir an mhaoin go dtí le déanaí, agus is é siúd a chuir ar fáil roinnt de na fíricí atá ar taifead agamsa anseo. Creidim gur tógadh anuas ar chuid den suíomh ar a laghad. Nuair a leagadh an teach fágadh siléir fairsinge dúnta. Deir daoine áitiúla go raibh bailiúchán mór páipéar agus doiciméad i gceann acu ar ceadaíodh iad a scriosadh nó a scaipeadh, chomh maith le bailiúchán fíona fhíneáilte. Chreidtí go forleathan go raibh siléar amháin fós ann nár osclaíodh riamh. Cúpla bliain ó shin rinneadh fiosruithe, ach níor aimsíodh aon rud.’

Sa lá atá inniu ann, is gort é an suíomh ag Lochlands agus tá tithíocht fho-uirbeach ina thimpeall, é aghaidh amach ar Chuan Chorcaí. Is beag atá fágtha den teach nó de na foirgnimh lasmuigh de seachas clós mór a bhfuil balla cloiche timpeall air agus geata áirse clasaiceach peidiméide a bhfuil an dáta 1812 le feiceáil air. Sa ghort, tá grúpa mór crann arócair ar comhartha iad de shuíomh an tí féin nach bhfuil fágtha de ach roinnt iarsmaí de na siléir. Cailleadh Hugh Crawford i mí an Mhárta 1989 faraor. Ní hann do mhuintir Crawford i gCorcaigh anois ó cailleadh John Crawford i 2007.

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Architecture

Crawford Art Gallery in snow

Crawford Art Gallery in snow

The identity of the architect responsible for the Custom House of 1724 remains uncertain. Its design has been locally attributed to Sir Edward Lovett Pearce, however, it would be wise to heed Maurice Carig's advice 'to remain on guard against the temptation to attribute every Pearcean-looking building out of 1730 to the master himself'. The building is less robustly classical than Pearce's other known designs, for example Bellamont, Castletown, or Cashel Palace, - and the distinguishing feature of these houses- a distinctively Classical treatment of the roofline - is almost entirely absent from the Cork building, where there is no attempt to hide the steep slated roof. (Although it should be noted that in Charles Smiths description of the building in 1750, he mentions a 'cornice and balustrade at top'; however there is no signs of balustrade in the mid-nineteenth century drawing of the building by the architect Henry Hill). The architect of the Custom House could certainly produce work which was elegant enough, but his style was more formally rooted in an Anglo-Dutch red-brick tradition than in the high Palladian classicism of Pearce.

It is far more constructive to look to other early eighteenth-century houses in the Cork area for clues as to the architect of the Custom House; and in the seaport of Youghal, less than thirty miles from Cork city, a large house in the main street known as the 'Red House' provides solid grounds for comparison with the Cork building. The Red House, probably so-called because brick buildings were comparatively rare in Munster up to the eighteenth century, was built by the Uniacke family in 1710. It has been traditionally ascribed to the Dutch architect and builder Leuventhen, and the design for the townhouse in Youghal contains key features which also appear on the Cork Custom House, such as the distinctive string course at first floor level, a gentle breakfront facade, quoins and window surrounds of carved limestone, and a lunette over the entrance doorway.

There is also in Youghal the famous clock gate straddling the main street, which although it bears the date 1771, was apparently modelled closely on an earlier structure. Craig mentions Coltsman as a possible architect for the clock gate, and compares it with the similar St.Ann's, the clock gate and the custom house are quite dumpy in appearance, and in spite of the classicising features of both buildings, they, and the Red House, share a homely feeling, and could possibly have originated from the same journeyman-builder's portfolio of designs.

In its original form, the Cork Custom House was three storeys high and seven bays wide on both its main fronts. The northern facade, looking on to the River Lee, has a centre breakfront of three bays, while the eastern facade, wider and more ornate, has its five bays recessed, the centremost bay being flanked by engaged columns. Doric at ground level, Ionioc above, rising two storeys and surmounted by carved pineapples and a lunette. The pineapple motif was widely used as a symbol of hospitality in eighteenth-century European and American architecture, but it is particularly linked with Newport, Rhode Island, a seaport which prospered on the West Indian trade. Stone pineapples are found on several buildings n Cork dating from this period, and hint also at the close trading links which existed between Cork and the West Indies. The pineapples are carved of a particularly white limestone that is native to Cork. The engaged columns and lunette are also of this stone, as are the quoins and window surrounds. This contrasts pleasently with the red-brick facing of the building - although it should be noted that the entire building was refaced with new bricks when the 1884 extension was constructed, so that the old and new parts would match more closely. The centremost bay of this eastern facade, flanked by columns and other embellishments, appears to have been the original main entrance to the Custom House; however a window has been inserted at this point, again during the 1884 renovations.

The building was the Custom House for the prosperous port of Cork until the beginning of the nineteenth-century traces of its original function remain: the large Gallery at first-floor level where the permanent collection now hangs was originally the 'Long Room' of the Custom House. This room would have been occupied by scriveners and clerks seated at long tables bearing ledger, where bills of lading would be prepared for ships sailing to and from Cork.

The earliest known description of the custom house appears in the book Voyages en Anglois et en Francois d'A. de la Motraye, en divers-es provinces..., published in 1732. Mortraye talks of the building and says it is 'the Handsomest of the public Edifaces & built after the Italian Manner'. some twenty years later, Charles Smith included a description of the building in his account of Cork:

"The Custom House is a large elegant building, of one main structure, and two returns; it consists of three stories; the angles, door-case, and window-frames, are of hewn stone, as is the cornice and balustrade at top; the other part of the building is of brick. In this house, are several offices of the management of the affairs of the excise and customs of this port; together with an elegant apartment, and all proper conveniences for the collector, who resides in the house. On either side of the building are the store-houses, which form two handsome piazzas. Here is a good quay, furnished with cranes and other conveniences for the discharging of goods; and a new canal made almost quite around the Custome-house, so that several vessels may lie there at a time."

In the year 1724, the old Custom-house being too small, was taken down, and this elegant building was then begun to be erected, at the King's expense, which was finished the following year. there is a house standing in the Main-street, S. of the exchange, which was formerly used as a Custom-house; and on it, are the arms of England, with a ship, cut in stone, near the roof".

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Ailtireacht

Gailearaí Ealaíne Crawford sa sneachta

Gailearaí Ealaíne Crawford sa sneachta

Tá amhras ann fós faoi cén t-ailtire a rinne an Teach Custaim i 1724. Sir Edward Lovett Pearce a dhear é dar leis an traidisiún áitiúil, ach bheadh ciall le rud a dhéanamh ar chomhairle Maurice Carig agus ‘a bheith cúramach gan géilleadh don chathú gach foirgneamh as 1730 a bhfuil chuma an Phiarsaigh air a leagan ar an máistir é féin’. Níl an foirgneamh chomh clasaiceach céanna leis na dearaí eile a rinne Pearce, amhail Bellamont, Baile an Chaisleáin, nó Pálás Chaiseal, agus an ghné shainiúil de na tithe seo — an chóireáil shainiúil Chlasaiceach ar an díon — ní mór ná go bhfuil sí ar fad imithe ó fhoirgneamh Chorcaí, áit nach bhfuil aon iarracht ar bun an díon géar slinnte a cheilt. (Ba chóir a thabhairt faoi deara áfach go luaitear ‘coirnis agus balastráid ag an mbarr’ i gcur síos Charles Smith ar an bhfoirgneamh i 1750’; mar sin féin, níl aon radharc ar bhalastráid sa phictiúr a tharraing an t-ailtire Henry Hill den fhoirgneamh i lár an naoú haois déag). Is cinnte go raibh sé ar chumas an ailtire a rinne an Teach Custaim obair a dhéanamh a bhí chomh galánta leis sin, ach is i dtraidisiún Angla-Ollainneach na mbrící dearga ba mhó a bhí a stíl siúd fréamhaithe seachas i gclasaiceachas ard Pallaidiach Pearce.

Is cuidithí go mór féachaint ar thithe eile ón ochtú haois déag i gceantar Chorcaí le haghaidh leideanna maidir le cén t-ailtire a rinne an Teach Custaim; agus i gcalafort Eochaille, níos lú ná tríocha míle ó chathair Chorcaí, tá teach mór ar an bpríomhshráid ar a dtugtar an ‘Red House’ a bhfuil bunús láidir le comparáid a dhéanamh idir é agus foirgneamh Chorcaí. Thóg Muintir Uniacke an Teach Dearg, ainm a tugadh air mar gur beag foirgneamh brící a bhí i gCúige Mumhan suas go dtí an t-ochtú haois déag i 1710 de réir dealraimh. Ar an ailtire agus an tógálaí Ollannach Leuventhen a leagadh é go traidisiúnta agus i ndearadh theach an bhaile in Eochaill tá príomhghnéithe atá le feiceáil ar an Teach Custaim i gCorcaigh freisin, amhail an cúrsa téada sainiúil ag leibhéal an chéad urláir, an façade mín briste, cuaillí agus fuinneoga aolchloiche mórthimpeall, agus lunette os cionn an dorais isteach.

Tá an geata cloig cáiliúil in Eochaill ag dul thar an bpríomhshráid freisin, agus cé gurb é dáta 1771 atá air, is cosúil go raibh sé múnlaithe go dlúth ar struchtúr níos luaithe. Is é Coltsman an t-ailtire a luann Craig mar ailtire a d’fhéadfadh an geata cloig a bheith déanta aige, agus déanann sé é a chur i gcomparáid le clog Naomh Áine ar den chineál céanna é, mar tá cuma stuimpíneach ar an ngeata cloig agus ar an teach araon, agus in ainneoin na dtréithe clasaiceacha atá iontu, tá an cluthar ina ghné chomónta eatarthu agus d’fhéadfadh sé gur ó phunann dearaí an tsaoir chéanna a tháinig siad.

Ina bhunchruth, bhí an Teach Custaim i gCorcaigh trí stór ar airde agus seacht mbáfhuinneog ar leithead ar an dá phríomhaghaidh. An façade thuaidh aghaidh amach aige ar an Laoi, tá briseadh trí bháfhuinneog sa lár, agus an façade thoir, tá sé níos leithne agus níos mó ornáidí, tá a cúig bháfhuinneog chuasaithe, agus ar chliatháin na báfhuinneoige is lárnaí tá colúin ionchorpraithe. Dórach ag leibhéal na talún, Iónach thuas, é dhá stór ar airde agus anainn snoite agus lunette os a chionn. Baineadh úsáid as móitíf na n-anann go forleathan mar shiombail den fháilteachas in ailtireacht na hEorpa agus Mheiriceá ón ochtú haois déag, ach tá nasctha ar leith idir í agus Newport, Oileán Rhode, ar calafort é a raibh rath air de barr na trádála leis na hIndiacha Thiar. Tá anainn chloiche le fáil ar roinnt foirgneamh i gCorcaigh ón tréimhse seo, agus is nod iad don dlúthnasc trádála a bhíodh idir Corcaigh agus na hIndiacha Thiar. Rinneadh an hanainn a shníomh d’aolchloch a bhfuil dath bán ar leith uirthi arb aolchloch í atá dúchasach i gCorcaigh. Is den chloch seo iad na colúin ionchorpraithe agus an lunette freisin, agus na cuaillí agus na fuinneoga mórthimpeall chomh maith. Is taitneamhach an chodarsnacht idir é seo agus aghaidh an fhoirgnimh ina bhfuil brící dearga — ach ba chóir a thabhairt faoi deara gur cuireadh aghaidh nua ar an bhfoirgneamh le brící nua nuair a tógadh an síneadh i1884, ionas gur fearr a bheadh na seanchodanna ag teacht leis na codanna nua. An bháfhuinneog is lárnaí sa façade thoir, colúin ar gach taobh de agus maisiúcháin eile ar a bharr sin, is cosúil gurbh é sin an príomhbhealach isteach chuig an Teach Custaim; mar sin féin, cuireadh fuinneog isteach faoin tráth, le linn athchóiriú 1884 freisin.

Ba é Teach Custaim foirgneamh chalafort rathúil Chorcaí go dtí tús na chéadfheidhme a baineadh as sa naoú haois déag. an Gailearaí mór atá ar leibhéal an chéad urláir agus ina bhfuil an buanbhailiúchán anois, ba é ‘Long Room’ an Tí Custaim é an chéad lá. Bhíodh scríobhaithe agus cléirigh ina suí ag boird fhada ar a mbíodh mórleabhair, billí luchta á n-ullmhú le haghaidh longa a sheoladh go Corcaigh agus amach aisti.

An cur síos is luaithe ar an Teach Custaim, tá sé le feiceáil sa leabhar Voyages en Anglois et en Francois d'A. de la Motraye, en divers-es provinces..., a foilsíodh i 1732. Tráchtann Mortraye ar an bhfoirgneamh agus deir sé gurb é ‘an foirgneamh poiblí is áille é, é tógtha ar an stíl Iodálach’. Fiche bliain níos déanaí nó mar sin, rinne Charles Smith an cur síos seo a leanas ar an bhfoirgneamh ina chuntas ar Chorcaigh:

‘Foirgneamh mór galánta é Teach Custaim, aon phríomhstruchtúr amháin ann, agus dhá chúlchuid; tá trí stór ann; na huillinneacha, an cás dorais, agus na frámaí fuinneoige, is de chloch ghearrtha iad, mar atá an choirnis agus an bhalastráid ag an mbarr; bríce atá sa chuid eile den fhoirgneamh. Sa teach seo, tá roinnt oifigí ann chun gnóthaí máil agus custaim an chalafoirt sin a bhainistiú; anuas air sin tá árasán galánta, agus na háiseanna go léir is cuí don bhailitheoir a bhfuil cónaí air sa teach. Ar an dá thaobh den fhoirgneamh tá na tithe stórais, a dtagann dhá phlásóg áille astu. Tá cé mhaith anseo, agus tá craenacha agus áiseanna eile ann chun earraí a urscaoileadh; tá canáil nua ann a rinneadh timpeall an Tí Custaim ionas go bhféadfaí roinnt soithí a fhágáil ann ag aon am amháin.’

De bharr go raibh an Sean-Teach Custaim róbheag, leagadh é sa bhliain 1724, cuireadh tús leis an bhfoirgneamh galánta seo a thógáil ansin ar chostas an Rí, agus críochnaíodh é an bhliain dar gcionn. Tá teach ar an bPríomhshráid, Sráid an Mhalartáin, agus úsáideadh é sin mar Theach Custaim roimhe sin; ar an teach sin tá airm Shasana, le long, í gearrtha sa chloch, in aice leis an díon’.

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18th century Cork

 John Butts View of Cork c. 1755 (Detail showing Custom House Quay, now the Crawford Art Gallery). Presented by the McCarthy Family 2005

John Butts View of Cork c. 1755 (Detail showing Custom House Quay, now the Crawford Art Gallery). Presented by the McCarthy Family 2005

The architectural character of Cork changed considerably during the course of the nineteenth century, and so few buildings from the eighteenth century survive in anything like their original condition. The considerable wealth generated through the export of agricultural produce resulted in the construction of a number of great houses in the Cork area and the almost complete transformation of the city centre. The attractive Dutch character of Cork's narrow streets and quays effectively disappeared and was replaced by the more severe and self-consciously character of new banks, post offices and a new Neo-classical custom house, constructed in 1814.

Visual representations of the Old Custom House are rare. In the latter half of the eithteenth century, John Butts, a talented local genre and landscape artist, painted a large panoramic view of Cork city, as seen from an elevated position to the north of the river. The cityscape depicted in the painting is actually an amalgamation of two separtated viewpoints and it is a measure of Grogan's talent as a landscape painter that he had managed to weld them together in a convincing way. The 1724 Custom House appears almost in the centre of the painting, surrounded by sailing vessels, as described by Charles Smith in his account of 1730, (quoted in 'The Architect of the Old Custom House' ). One of the two 'handsome piazzas' described by Smith can be seen in front of the Custom House, the attractive facade of Richard Sainthill's Queen Anne house can be discerned above the masts of the ships. This house, and the Custom House, are the only two quayside buildings depicted in the painting which survive to the present day.

Grogan's painting conveys well the distinctvie Dutch character of the city at that time. Red-brick houses line the quays, their ornate gable fronts facing the river. The painting shows the old custom house facing onto the large enclosed quay, or piazza, where tradition has it, contraband tobacco was burned by customs officers. That piazza became in the nineteenth century the site of a concert hall called the Athenaeum, built in the mid-nineteeth century. The Athenaeum was an elegant colonnaded building of considerable charm. The later became known as the Theatre Royal or 'the Opera House'.

The wide channel beside the Custom House, refered to by Smith as a 'canal', was known then as King's Quay. As Croker described, it was arched over during the nineteenth century and renamed Nelson Place. It is now known as Emmett Place. The Journal of the Cork Historical and Archaelogical Society in 1892 contains a note by R. Day which mentions the filling-in of the quay. The note itself probably dates from an earlier part of the nineteenth century, as it refers to the Royal Cork Institution, which occupied the Custom House from 1832 to 1850:

'The present Library of the Royal Cork Institution was the long room of the Old Custom House, and the foundation stones of the wall separating the yard from Nelson Place was a dock, prior to the building of Patrick's Bridge'
Eighteenth-century maps of Cork show a bowling green just to the south of the Custom House. Bowling was a popular sport at the time (it is interesting to note that in 1723 the bowling green beside the custom house of New York city became that city's first pubic park). The names of laneways around thre present-day Crawford Gallery evoke the period: Bowling Green Alley, Drawbridge Street, Half-moon Street and French Church Street - named after French Huguenots who settled in Cork following the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes in 1685.

Lavitt' Quay, opposite the Custom House, was named after Joseph Lavitt (or Lavitte), a Huguenot merchant who came to Cork in 1690 and made a fortune refining sugar and supplying spirits to the Williamite army in Ireland. Richard Sainthill recalled how Lavitt was so unashamed of this source of wealth that he had a small gilded key suspended by silver chains from the richly stuccoed ceiling of his dining room. However, Lavit's business concerns were not restricted to sugar and whiskey; he started Cork's first paper mill at Glanmire and was responsible for the reclamation and development of the quay which bears his name - the presently-named Lavitt's Quay is a little further upstream. Downstream was Seven Ovens Quay, named after its Dutch owner Theodore Vansenhoven. Amsterdam's Meer Dyke reappeared in Cork as the Mardyke riverside walk, yet another reflection of the strong Dutch influence in Cork at that time, and it is not surprising that the closest parallels for Grogan's own style of painting are also to be found in Holland. These influences on Cork's art and architecture stemmed from the close mercantile contacts which existed between Amsterdam and Cork in the eighteenth century.

As the size of cargo ships increased, and new quays were constructed to accommodate them further down the river, the position of the Old Custom House became unsuitable. When a new Custom House was built after 1810, the old building fell into disuse for a considerable period. Several Cork philanthropic and educational bodies, such as the Royal Cork Institution and the Cork Mechanics Institute, applied to the government for the use of the building, but it was not until 1832 that the RCI was finally able to move its considerable library, scientific instruments and collection of sculpture casts into the old building. For the following two decades, the Old Custom House became the centre of art and science education in the city. However, with the founding of Queens College Cork in 1849, the RCI's useful life was effectively brought to an end, and the Old Custom House that same year was re-opened as a Government School of Design, one of a large number of such schools which were established throughout England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales at this time. In 1884, a large extension was added to the School of Design, which was then renamed the Crawford School of Art. This extension, and the original Custom House, now form the Crawford Art Gallery.

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Corcaigh an 18ú haois

John Butts View of Cork c. 1755 (Mionghné ina dtaispeántar Cé an Tí Custaim, Gailearaí Ealaíne Crawford anois). Á chur i láthair ag Muintir McCarthy 2005

John Butts View of Cork c. 1755 (Mionghné ina dtaispeántar Cé an Tí Custaim, Gailearaí Ealaíne Crawford anois). Á chur i láthair ag Muintir McCarthy 2005

Tháinig athrú mór ar charachtar ailtireachta Chorcaí le linn an naoú haois déag, agus is beag foirgneamh ón ochtú haois déag atá fós in aon chosúlacht dá riocht bunaidh. Mar thoradh ar an saibhreas suntasach a gineadh trí táirgí talmhaíochta a easpórtáil, tógadh roinnt tithe móra i gceantar Chorcaí agus an tháinig ó bhonn geall leis ar lár na cathrach. An carachtar tarraingteach Ollainneach ar shráideanna cúnga agus ar ché Chorcaí, d’imigh sé den chuid is mó, agus cuireadh ina áit bainc nua, oifigí poist agus teach custaim nua nuachlasaiceach a tógadh i 1814.

Is deacair teacht ar radharc ar an Sean-Teach Custaim. Sa dara leath den naoú haois déag, John Butts, ealaíontóir seánra agus tírdhreacha áitiúil, phéinteáil sé radharc mór lánléargais ar chathair Chorcaí, mar a chonacthas í ó áit ard ar an taobh thuaidh den abhainn. An chathair a fheictear sa phictiúr, is éard atá ann i ndáiríre cónascadh de dhá radharc ar leith agus tá sé de dhea-theist ar thallann Grogan mar phéintéir tírdhreacha gur éirigh leis iad a tháthú le chéile ar bhealach inchreidte. Tá Teach Custaim 1724 beagnach i lár an phictiúir, soithí seoltóireachta timpeall air, de réir an chur síos ó Charles Smith ina chuntas ó 1730, (é luaite in ‘The Architect of the Old Custom House’). Os comhair an Tí Custaim feictear ceann den dá ‘dá phlásóg áille’ a bhfuil cur síos déanta ag Smith orthu, agus is féidir façade tarraingteach Theach na Banríona Áine de chuid Richard Sainthill a aithint os cionn chrainn na long. An teach seo, agus an Teach Custaim, is iad an t-aon dá fhoirgneamh cois cé a léirítear sa phictiúr dá maireann go dtí an lá atá inniu ann.

Léiríonn péintéireacht Grogan an saincharachtar Ollainneach a bhí sa chathair ag an am sin. Tithe brící dearga ar feadh na gcéanna, a n-aghaidheanna ornáideacha os comhair na habhann. Sa phictiúr taispeántar an Sean-Teach Custaim agus é os comhair na cé móire iata, nó an phlásóg, áit a ndódh oifigigh chustaim tobac contrabhannach. Sa naoú haois déag rinneadh halla ceolchoirme den phlásóg ar a dtugtar an Athenaeum, a tógadh i lár an naoú haois. Foirgneamh colúnrach galánta ab ea The Athenaeum agus bhí caithis ar leith ag baint léi. Tugadh an Amharclann Ríoga nó ‘The Opera House’ air níos déanaí.

Tugadh ‘King’s Quay’ ar an gcainéal leathan in aice an Tí Custaim, agus is mar ‘canáil’ a thagair Smith tagairt dó. De réir chur síos Croker, bhí sé droimneach le linn an naoú haois déag agus ba é Nelson Place an t-ainm nua a tugadh air. Plás Emmet a thugtar anois air. Tá nóta le R. Day ón Cork Historical and Archaelogical Society 1892 ina luaitear gur líonadh isteach an ché. Is dócha go dtagann an nóta féin ó thréimhse níos luaithe sa naoú haois déag, mar go dtagraíonn sé don Royal Cork Institution, a bhí sa Teach Custaim ó 1832 go 1850:

‘Bhíodh Leabharlann reatha an Royal Cork Institution mar sheomra fada an tSean-Tí Custaim, agus sular tógadh Droichead Phádraig, ba dhuga a bhíodh i mbunchlocha an bhalla a scarann an clós ó Nelson Place’

Ar léarscáileanna de Chorcaigh san ochtú haois déag, léirítear faiche bhollaí díreach ar an taobh theas den Teach Custaim. Bhí tóir ar na bollaí mar spórt ag an am (tá sé suimiúil a thabhairt faoi deara gurbh í an fhaiche bhollaí in aice le teach custaim chathair Nua-Eabhrac an chéad pháirc phoiblí a bhí aici). In ainmneacha na lánaí mórthimpeall Ghailearaí Crawford sa lá atá inniu tá léiriú ar an tréimhse: Lána Fhaiche na mBollaí, Sráid an Droichid Tógala, Sráid na Leathghealaí agus Sráid Theampall na Fraince — sráid a fuair a hainm ó Úgónaigh na Fraince a lonnaigh i gCorcaigh tar éis Fhorógra Nantes i 1685.

Cé Lavitt, os coinne an Tí Custaim, ainmníodh í i ndiaidh Joseph Lavitt (nó Lavitte), ceannaí Úgónach a tháinig go Corcaigh sa bhliain 1690 agus a rinne saibhreas as siúcra a scagadh agus biotáille a sholáthar d’arm Liam in Éirinn. Ba chuimhin le Richard Sainthill oiread mínáire a bheith ar Lavitt as foinse a shaibhris go raibh eochair bheag órnite ar crochadh ar shlabhraí airgid aige ó shíleáil stucó a sheomra bia. Mar sin féin, ní le siúcra ná uisce beatha amháin a bhain cúrsaí gnó Lavitt; thosaigh sé an chéad mhuileann páipéir i nGleann Maghair agus ba é siúd a chuir ar bun míntíriú agus forbairt na cé a bhfuil a ainm uirthi — an ché darb ainm Cé Lavitt faoi láthair, tá sé tamall eile suas an abhainn. I dtreo bhéal na habhann bhíodh Cé Seven Ovens, a fuair a ainm as an úinéir Ollannach, Theodore Vansenhoven. Bhí Meer Dyke Amstardam eile le feiceáil i gCorcaigh i bhfoirm siúlóid cois abhann Mardyke, é ina léiriú eile ar thionchar láidir na hÍsiltíre i gCorcaigh ag an am sin, agus ní haon ionadh é gur san Ísiltír atá an rud is gaire do stíl Grogan le fáil. D’eascair na tionchair seo ar ealaín agus ar ailtireacht Chorcaí ó na dlúththeagmhálacha tráchtála idir Amstardam agus Corcaigh san ochtú haois déag.

Leis an méadú ar mhéid na long lastais, agus de réir mar a bhí céanna nua á dtógáil chun freastal orthu níos faide síos san abhainn, tharla sé gur éirigh suíomh an tSean-Tí Custaim mí-oiriúnach. Nuair a tógadh an Teach Custaim tar éis 1810, thit an seanfhoirgneamh as úsáid ar feadh tréimhse fhada. Cuid mhaith comhlachtaí daonchairdis agus oideachais i gCorcaigh, ar nós an Royal Cork Institution agus an Cork Mechanics Institute, rinne siad iarratas ar an rialtas an foirgneamh a úsáid, ach ní raibh an RCI ábalta a leabharlann mhór, a uirlisí eolaíochta ná a mhúnlaí dealbh a aistriú isteach sa seanfhoirgneamh go dtí 1832 ar deireadh. Ar feadh fiche bliain ina dhiaidh sin, ba é an Sean-Teach Custaim croílár an oideachais ealaíne agus eolaíochta sa chathair. Mar sin féin, nuair a bunaíodh Coláiste na Banríona i gCorcaigh i 1849, cuireadh deireadh leis an úsáid éifeachtach a bhíothas a bhaint as RCI, agus athosclaíodh an SeanTeach Custaim an bhliain chéanna mar Government School of Design, ceann den líon mór scoileanna den sórt sin a bunaíodh ar fud Shasana, na hÉireann, na hAlban agus na Breataine Bige ag an am. Sa bhliain 1884, cuireadh síneadh mór leis an School of Design, agus ba é Crawford School of Art an t-ainm nua a tugadh air. Is é an síneadh seo, agus an Teach Custaim bunaidh, Gailearaí Ealaíne Crawford anois.

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The Gibson Bequest

Sean Keating Men of the South (detail) 1921

Sean Keating Men of the South (detail) 1921

On 3 February 1919, Joseph Stafford Gibson, a native of Kimurry in Co. Cork, died in Madrid, aged 82 years. Although from an old Munster family, Gibson had spent the best part of his life in Spain. He was an enthusiastic amateur artist and produced a considerable number of watercolours depicting Spanish landscapes and towns. On his occasional return visits to Cork, Gibson would seek advice and encouragement from James Brenan, headmaster at the School of Art. As a mark of gratitude for this help, Gibson bequeathed his coin collection, some pieces of Spanish ceramic and silverware, and most importantly, the sum of £14,790, to the School of Art, 'for the furthering of Art in the City of his boyhood'. To carry out the terms of the will, the 'Gibson Bequest Committee' was set up in 1922 with J.B. Giltinan as Secretary. (N.B.There are preserved in the Crawford Gallery today, minute books which detail some of the early meetings of the Gibson Bequest Committee, particularly for the years 1922 to 1926, and the following account is derived almost in its entirety from these handwritten records).

One of the first things the Gibson Bequest Committee had to consider was the display cabinet, which Joseph Stafford Gibson had requested be made, for the exhibition of his personal collection. At one of the initial meetings of the Gibson Committee, held on Saturday 11 November 1922. Daniel Corkery suggested that two inscriptions be placed in the cabinet, one in English and one in Irish, recording Joseph Stafford Gibson's generosity. This was agreed, and James Archer was requested to carry out the engraving of the inscriptions, which still grace the Gibson display cabinet today. The chairman undertook to consult Dr Westropp of the National Museum as to the display of the coins in the case. It was agreed to purchase an etching of The Cork Quays by Griffin, as an old student of the School of Art, at a cost of £1. Is. 0d.

Another problem was how the bequest might be used to help students of the School of Art. It was decided to establish a travelling scholarship fund. The committee then discussed sending the first selected student, William Sheehan, to a 'continental art centre'. George Atkinson, principal of the Metropolitan School in Dublin, commented that Sheehan was 'the most talented young man in Ireland, with the exception of Keating'. It was decided to award Sheehan a scholarship for three months and send him to Paris. However, at the next meeting of the Gibson Committee, it was decided, 'for important reasons', that Sheehan should go to Madrid instead. Considerations other than artistic presumably dictated this change. Sheehan was to be given a subsistence allowance of £20 per month; he was to get third class travelling expense to Madrid - with saloon on steamers - and his tuition and canvases were to be paid for, 'such expenses to be properly voucheed'. The scholarship student would have to be given some of his expenses in advance, as it was considered that 'the Committee's Paying Order would hardly be accepted in Madrid'. Sheehan himself was then called before the Gibson Committee and given sage advice on how he was to make the most of this golden opportunity which was being afforded him. George Atkinson had undertaken to provide introduction for Sheehan in Madrid, in order that he could visit various painters' studios.

The Gibson Committee then considered the purchase of works for the Art Gallery. George Atkinson had provided them with a list of names of people who would make a good panel of consultants. These included the President of the Royal Hibernian Academy, the Director of the National Gallery of Ireland and the Headmaster of the Metropolitan School of Art. Atkinson put forward the office rather than the holder, for the sake continuity. These three would form the nucleus of a panel, the others to be appointed by the Committee, as required. Atkinson had also prepared a list of Irish artists, and 'starred' them in order of his opinion of their importance, but he added that if the Gibson Bequest Committee got 'a good Hone or Osbourne' for their impending purchase they would be doing well. The Bequest Committee did not like the idea of office holders being appointed, but as their own submitted list included Dermod O'Brien PRHA, Langton Douglas (Director of the National Gallery of Ireland) and George Atkinson himself, their objections were theoretical for the present. These three men were to act as expert consultants with Daniel Corkery and Hugh Charde, Second Master at the Crawford School of Art.

On Saturday 3 February 1923, the purchase of paintings for the Art Gallery was discussed, but J.J. O'Connor said that he was awaiting a copy of the regulations governing the Chantrey Bequest at the Tate Gallery, so little could be done for the present. The disposition of the souvenirs, books and art collection of Gibson was discussed, and it was decided that his watercolours should be bound in leather folders, to be designed by 'Miss Scott' of the School of Art; his collection of engravings was also to go to the School, while his collection of drawings of butterflies could be used by the Design classes. Some of Gibson's books went to the School library, others were given to the 'free library'. His small vice was to be given to the enamelling class, and his telescope and opera glasses to the life drawing class, and his small hatchet to the School of Art attendant.

On May 5, 1923, it was reported that William Sheehan had set off for Spain, leaving Cork on April 4 and arriving in Madrid on May 10. Almost immediately, the young scholarship student was in debt, to the tune of 12 pesetas for a telegram to the Secretary of the Bequest Committee. He reported that he was studying at the Academia de Bellas Artes in Madrid. Sheehan received a weekly allowance of £6, or 150 pesetas. His hotel bill for the first nine days was 218 pesetas, which was more than his entire allowance for that period, but his transferring to a pension lowered that expense. Even after receiving a letter from a H.A.K. Boyd on Sheehan's behalf, saying that his allowance was insufficient, the Bequest Committee refused to raise it, although they did forward his £5 to cover his debts. By June 2, Senor Bley of the Academia had still not replied to a letter enquiring as to Sheehan's performance, but it was agreed nonetheless to extend his scholarship beyond the probationary period. However, on June 15, a special meeting of the Bequest Committee was called, after reports that Sheehan had been using his letters of introduction to important people in Madrid (given him by Atkinson) to 'cadge for money, whilst under the influence of drink, on the ground that the Gibson Bequest Committee does not allow him sufficient to live on'. Councillor Ellis moved that 'in view of Mr William Sheehan's failure to realise and make proper use of the opportunity which had been afforded him to ensure his artistic career', the scholarship should be terminated. The motion was unopposed.

Not long after, in unknown circumstances, William Sheehan died, and on October 20 1923, the Committee proposed a vote of sympathy to his relatives. A year later, in accordance with the terms of the Gibson Bequest, an exhibition of the paintings which Sheehan had executed while in Madrid was mounted in the Art Gallery, for fifteen days. The Bequest Committee decided not to press any claim of ownership of these works, but instead presented them to Sheehan's mother, with a request that she might consider presenting one (a painting from the nude) for inclusion in the Gibson collection.

The Bequest Committee turned their attention to the purchase of paintings for the Gallery. On December 1, 1923, Atkinson, Corkery and Charde recommended the purchase of In Capel Street by Jack B. Yeats, a Sketch in Oils by Daniel A. Vere Smith, and the modelled head An Stracaire Fir by Joseph Higgins. Atkinson had visited the studio of Jack B. Yeats himself, and recommended that the Committee purchase Off the Donegal Coast and a smaller canvas, A Quayside Worker.

All the above, with the exception of the last, were purchased by the Committee. Atkinson further recommeded Sean Keating's Men of the South as 'a good work; almost great work'; he was supported in this recommendation by Dermod O'Brien. Some weeks later, on December 15, the Committee agreed on a set of regulations governing the purchase of works for the Art Gallery.

As well as original works in oils, watercolours, pastels, ink, silverpoint and crayons, the Committee would consider sculptures (although only plaster works in exceptional circumstances) and prints (etchings, mezzotints, dry-points, woodcuts). The decorative arts were included in the list, with goldsmiths' and silversmiths' work being mentioned, as well as stained glass and woodcarving. Priority was given to the purchase of portraits with 'subject pictures', landscapes and sculpture following in sequence. The panel of Advisers were to decide on all purchases, and members of the panel were to travel to the 'Great Art Centres' to select works for the Cork Gallery.

Recommendations then flowed in from the panel of expert advisers, particularly George Atkinson, who strongly commended Gerald Festus Kelly's portrait of Sasha Kropotkin, exhibited in Dublin in 1922. This was duly purchased, for 250. the same price that had been asked for Keating's Men of the South, and not far off what Jack B. Yeats was asking for Off the Donegal Coast. With these considerable sums being expended on works for the Cork Art Gallery, local interest was aroused and representations were made to the Gibson Request Committee that the work of local artists be purchased for the gallery, from the annual Munster Fine Arts Exhibition. However, the Bequest Committee resisted this appeal.

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Tiomnacht Gibson

Sean Keating Men of the South (mionghné) 1921

Seán Keating Men of the South (mionghné) 1921

Ar an 3 Feabhra 1919, Joseph Stafford Gibson as Cill Mhuire i gCo. Chorcaí ó dhúchas, cailleadh é i Maidrid, agus é 82 bliana d’aois. Cé gurbh as seanteaghlach Muimhneach é, chaith Gibson an chuid is mó dá shaol sa Spáinn. Ba ealaíontóir amaitéarach díograiseach é agus chruthaigh sé líon suntasach uiscedhathanna ina léirítear tírdhreacha agus bailte na Spáinne. Ar a shiúlta dó ar ais go Corcaigh ó am go chéile, d’iarradh Gibson idir chomhairle agus spreagadh ó James Brenan, príomhoide ag an School of Art. Mar chomhartha buíochais as an gcabhair seo, thiomnaigh Gibson don School of Art a bhailiúchán bonn, roinnt píosaí de cheirmeacha agus d’earraí airgid Spáinneacha, agus rud is tábhachtaí fós, suim airgid £14,790 ‘as ealaín a chur chun cinn i gcathair a óige’. Chun téarmaí na huachta a chur i gcrích, bunaíodh an ‘Gibson Bequest Committee’ i 1922 agus J.B. Giltinan mar Rúnaí. (N.B. Tá siad seo á gcoimeád i nGailearaí Crawford sa lá atá inniu ann, leabhair mhiontuairiscí ina dtugtar mionsonraí ar chuid de na cruinnithe luatha a bhí ag an Gibson Bequest Committee, le haghaidh na mblianta 1922 go 1926, agus faightear an cuntas seo ar fad geall leis ó na taifid lámhscríofa seo).

Ceann de na chéad rudaí a bhí le breithniú ag an Gibson Bequest Committee ná an caibinéad taispeána, rud a d’iarr Joseph Stafford Gibson a dhéanamh chun a bhailiúchán pearsanta a thaispeáint. Ag ceann de na chéad chruinnithe a bhí ag an Gibson Committee a tionóladh Dé Sathairn an 11 Samhain 1922, mhol Daniel Corkery go gcuirfí dhá inscríbhinn sa chaibinéad, ceann i mBéarla agus ceann i nGaeilge chun taifead a dhéanamh ar fhlaithiúlacht Joseph Stafford Gibson. Aontaíodh air seo, agus iarradh ar James Archer greanadh a dhéanamh ar na hinscríbhinní atá le feiceáil fós ar an gcaibinéad taispeána Gibson sa lá atá inniu ann. Gheall an cathaoirleach go rachadh sé i gcomhairle leis an Dr Westropp ón Ard-Mhúsaem maidir leis na boinn a bhí sa chás. Aontaíodh go gceannófaí ar chostas £1 eitseáil a rinne Griffin de Chéanna Chorcaí, iarmhac léinn de chuid an School of Art. Is. 0d.

Fadhb eile a bhí ann ná cén bealach ina bhféadfaí an tiomnacht a úsáid chun cabhrú le mic léinn an School of Art. Rinne an coiste plé ansin maidir leis an gcéad mac léinn a roghnaíodh, William Sheehan, é a chur chuig ‘ionad ealaíne ar an mór-roinn’. George Atkinson, príomhoide an Metropolitan School i mBaile Átha Cliath, dúirt sé gurbh í Sheehan ‘an fear óg ba chumasaí a bhí in Éirinn, cé is moite de Keating’. Cinneadh scoláireacht a bhronnadh ar Sheehan ar feadh trí mhí agus é a sheoladh chuig Páras. Mar sin féin, ag an gcéad chruinniú eile den Gibson Committee, is éard a cinneadh, ‘ar chúiseanna tábhachtacha’, ná gur cheart do Sheehan dul go Maidrid ina ionad sin. D’fhéadfadh sé gur chúinsí eile seachas an ealaín féin a bhí taobh thiar den athrú sin. Bhí liúntas cothaithe £20 sa mhí le tabhairt do Sheehan; bhí sé chun costais a fháil chun taisteal den tríú grád a dhéanamh go Maidrid — bhí salún ar na galtáin — agus d’íocfaí a theagasc agus a chanbhás ach ‘na costais sin a bheith deimhnithe i gceart’. Chaithfí cuid de chostais mhac léinn faighte na scoláireachta a thabhairt dó roimh ré, mar gur measadh gur ‘ar éigean a ghlacfaí le hOrdú Íocaíochta an Choiste i Maidrid’. Glaodh ar Sheehan é féin os comhair an Gibson Committee agus tugadh dó comhairle faoin mbealach leis an leas is fearr a bhaint as an deis órga seo a bhí á tabhairt dó. Thug George Atkinson faoi Sheehan a chur in aithne i Maidrid, ionas go bhféadfadh sé cuairt a thabhairt ar stiúideonna péintéirí éagsúla.

Rinne an Gibson Committee breithniú ansin ar oibreacha a cheannach le haghaidh an Ghailearaí Ealaíne. Chuir George Atkinson ar fáil dóibh liosta d’ainmneacha na ndaoine a bheadh ina bpainéal maith comhairleoirí. I measc na ndaoine sin bhí Uachtarán an Royal Hibernian Academy, Stiúrthóir an National Gallery of Ireland agus Príomhoide an Metropolitan School of Art. Ar mhaithe le leanúnachas ba é ainm na hoifige a chuir Atkinson ar aghaidh seachas an sealbhóir. Bheadh an triúr sin mar núicléas an phainéil, agus na daoine eile le ceapadh ag an gCoiste, de réir mar ba ghá. Chomh maith leis sin, d’ullmhaigh Atkinson liosta ealaíontóirí Éireannacha, agus chuir sé réaltaí leo in ord a thuairime ar an tábhacht a bhain leo, ach dúirt sé freisin gur maith an rath a bheadh orthu dá mba rud é go bhfaigheadh an Gibson Bequest Committee ‘Hone maith nó Osbourne’ as an gceannach a bhí le déanamh acu. Níor thaitin leis an Bequest Committee an smaoineamh go gceapfaí sealbhóirí oifige, ach bhí Dermod O’Brien PRHA, Langton Douglas (Stiúrthóir an National Gallery of Ireland) agus George Atkinson féin mar chuid dá liosta féin. Bhí an triúr fear seo le feidhmiú mar shainchomhairleoirí ag Daniel Corkery agus Hugh Charde, Dara Máistir ag an Crawford School of Art.

Dé Sathairn an 3 Feabhra 1923, rinneadh plé faoi phictiúir a cheannach le haghaidh an Ghailearaí Ealaíne, ach is éard a dúirt J.J. O’Connor go raibh sé ag fanacht le cóip de na rialuithe maidir leis an Chantrey Bequest ag an Tate Gallery, agus gur beag a d’fhéadfaí a dhéanamh go fóill. Pléadh diúscairt chuimhneacháin, leabhair agus bailiúchán ealaíne Gibson, agus cinneadh gur cheart a uiscedhathanna a cheangal i bhfillteáin leathair, lena ndearadh ag ‘Miss Scott’ de chuid an School of Art; bhí a bhailiúchán greantaí le dul go dtí an Scoil freisin, agus d’fhéadfadh na ranganna Deartha a bhailiúchán de pictiúir d’fhéileacáin a úsáid freisin. Chuaigh cuid de leabhair Gibson go dtí leabharlann na Scoile, tugadh cinn eile don ‘leabharlann saor in aisce’. Bhí a bhís bheag le tabhairt don rang cruanta, a chuid teileascóp agus spéaclairí opera le tabhairt don rang líníochta beo, agus a thua, is é an School of Art a gheobhadh é.

Ar an 5 Bealtaine 1923, tuairiscíodh go raibh William Sheehan tar éis tabhairt faoin Spáinn, d’fhág sé Corcaigh an 4 Aibreán agus bhainfeadh sé Maidrid amach an 10 Bealtaine. Go díreach ar theacht dó, bhí mac léinn óg na scoláireachta i bhfiacha, 12 peseta as teileagram a chur chuig rúnaí an Bequest Committee. Thuairiscigh sé go raibh sé i mbun staidéir ag an Academia de Bellas Artes i Maidrid. Fuair Sheehan liúntas seachtainiúil £6, nó 150 peseta. Ba é a bhille óstáin don chéad naoi lá 218 peseta, méid ba mhó ná a liúntas iomlán don tréimhse sin, ach tháinig laghdú ar an gcostas sin nuair a chuaigh sé chuig pension. Fiú amháin tar éis litir a fháil ó H.A.K. Boyd thar ceann Sheehan, litir ina ndúradh nár leor a liúntas, dhiúltaigh an Bequest Committee é a ardú, ach chuir siad £5 a chur ar aghaidh chun a fhiacha a chlúdach. Faoin 2 Meitheamh 2, fós ní raibh freagra tugtha ag Senor Bley ón Academia maidir le cé mar a bhí Sheehan ag cruthú, ach aontaíodh mar sin féin a scoláireacht a shíneadh thar an tréimhse phromhaidh. Mar sin féin, an 15 Meitheamh, glaodh cruinniú speisialta de chuid an Bequest Committee, tar éis tuairiscí a fháil go raibh Sheehan ag baint úsáide as na litreacha a scríobhadh chun é a chur in aithne do dhaoine tábhachtacha i Maidrid (litreacha arbh Atkinson a thug dó iad) ar mhaithe le ‘le hairgead a iarradh agus é faoi thionchar na dí, ar an mbonn nach raibh an Gibson Request Committee ag tabhairt dóthain dó le maireachtáil’. Mhol Comhairleoir Ellis gur cheart deireadh a chur leis an scoláireacht ‘i bhfianaise gur theip ar an Uasal William Sheehan úsáid chuí a bhaint as an deis a tugadh dó a ghairm ealaíne a bhaint amach’. Níor cuireadh i gcoinne an mholta.

Ní fada ina dhiaidh sin a cailleadh William Sheehan ar chúinsí nach eol, agus an 20 Deireadh Fómhair 1923, mhol an Coiste vóta comhbhróin lena ghaolta. Bliain ina dhiaidh sin, de réir théarmaí an Gibson Request, na pictiúir a bhí déanta ag Sheehan agus é i Maidrid, rinneadh iad a chrochadh sa Ghailearaí Ealaíne, ar feadh cúig lá déag. Chinn an Bequest Committee gan aon éileamh úinéireachta a dhéanamh i dtaca leis na saothair seo, ach ina ionad sin cuireadh faoi bhráid mháthair Sheehan iad, agus iarradh uirthi a machnamh a dhéanamh faoi cheann (péintéireacht de dhuine nocht) a chur i láthair lena áireamh i mbailiúchán Gibson.

Dhírigh an Bequest Committee a aird ar phictiúir a cheannach le haghaidh an Ghailearaí. Ar an 1 Nollaig 1923, mhol Atkinson, Corkery agus Charde go gceannófaí ‘In Capel Streets’ le Jack B. Yeats, ‘a Sketch in Oils’ le Daniel A. Vere Smith, agus an ceann múnlaithe úd ‘An Stracaire Fir’ le Joseph Higgins. Thug Atkinson cuairt ar stiúideo Jack B. Yeats é féin, agus mhol sé go gceannódh an Coiste ‘Off the Donegal Coast’ agus canbhás níos lú, A Quayside Worker.

Rinne an Coiste na nithe thuasluaite go léir a cheannach, cé is moite de na cinn dheireanacha. Chomh maith leis sin mhol Atkinson Men of the South le Sean Keating mar ‘shaothar mhaith; mórshaothar beagnach’; thacaigh Dermod O’Brien leis an mholadh seo uaidh. Roinnt seachtainí ina dhiaidh sin, ar an 15 Nollaig, tháinig an Coiste ar aon fhocal maidir le sraith rialacha maidir le saothair a cheannach le haghaidh an Ghailearaí Ealaíne.

Anuas ar shaothair bhunaidh a rinneadh as olaí, uiscedhathanna, pastail, dúch, pointe airgeadaithe agus criáin, chuirfeadh an Coiste dealbha (cé nach n-oibríonn plástar ach in imthosca eisceachtúla) agus priontaí san áireamh (eitseálacha, meistintí, pointí tirime, gearrthacha adhmaid). Áiríodh na healaíona maisiúla ar an liosta, agus luadh saothar na ngaibhne óir agus na ngaibhne airgid, chomh maith le gloine dhaite agus adhmadóireacht. Tugadh tús áite do cheannach na bportráidí le ‘pictiúir ábhair’, tírdhreacha agus dealbha san ord sin. Bhí an painéal Comhairleoirí le cinneadh a dhéanamh maidir le gach ceannachán, agus bhí baill an phainéil le taisteal go dtí na ‘Ionaid Ealaíne Mhóra’ chun saothair a roghnú le haghaidh Ghailearaí Chorcaí.

Tháinig a lán moltaí isteach ansin ón bpainéal sainchomhairleoirí, ó George Atkinson go háirithe, portráid Gerald Festus Kelly de Sasha Kropotkin a bhí ar taispeáint i mBaile Átha Cliath i 1922 á moladh go láidir aige. Ceannaíodh é go deimhin, ar 250., an praghas céanna a iarradh ar Men of the South le Keating, agus suim nach raibh i bhfad ón méid a bhí Jack B. Yeats a iarraidh as Off the Donegal Coast. Agus na suimeanna suntasacha seo á gcaitheamh ar shaothair le haghaidh an Cork Art Gallery, spreagadh spéis áitiúil agus cuireadh in iúl don Gibson Bequest Committee go gceannófaí saothar ealaíontóirí áitiúla le haghaidh an ghailearaí ón Munster Fine Arts Exhibition a bhíodh ann go bliantúil. Mar sin féin, chuir an Bequest Committee i gcoinne an achomhairc sin.

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Art School

 Crawford Art School Early 20th. Century

Crawford Art School Early 20th. Century

Throughout the nineteenth century many talented people were associated with the Cork School of Art, or, as it later became, the Crawford School of Art; but it was James Brenan, headmaster of the school for 29 years, up to his departure for Dublin in 1889, who established the school firmly in the pre-eminent position that it has always held in art education in Ireland. Strickland commends his 'commonsense, shrewdness and tact', and it must have been largely through his efffots that William Horatio Crawford was induced to support a magnificent extension to the school in 1884.

The extension of the Cork School of Art included several magnificent new purpose-built galleries and entailed the renovation of practically the entire building. As a consequence of this generosity, the new building was to hear his family name, as it still does to the present day. The extension was designed by Arthur Hill, of the architects firm of Hill & Co. is responsible for much of the better quality Victorian building work in Cork, and their characteristic use of red-brick with white limestone trim is sympathetic and attractive in an urban context. Judging from architectural drawings submitted by the firm Hill & Co., it had originally been intended that the extensions and additions to the Old Custom House in 1884 would include a School of Art and Science, and indeed the wrought-iron gates at the entrance to the entrance to the present Crawford Gallery do bear the inscriptions 'Art' and 'Science', but in the event, these proposals were scaled down, and the building which now stands on Emmett Place was formally titled the Crawford School of Art.

The architect's scale model of the original proposed building survives in a private collection in Cork, and is considerably more ambitious in scale and treatment than the extension actually completed. This model, and the ground plans associated with it, show that the original intention was to have had art and technology taught under the one roof, with both an art museum and a science museum lending further lustre to the building.

The Crawford School of Science and art was to be replete with several turrets, not just the one octagonal turret which graces the building today, and if it had been constructed, the proposed school would have put a good number of major metropolitan buildings to shame. As with many such ambitious architectural proposals, the building which was actually constructed reflects a keener awareness of financial constraints, although even in its abbreviated form, the new Crawford School of Art was a magnificent building by any standards. Arthur Hill successfully blended in the new extension with the old 1724 custom house building. It seems that he went to the trouble of refacing the entire existing building with the same new brick, in order that the two parts would harmonise. The octagonal tower on the present building (a feature characteristic of Hill's architecture), marks the joining of the old Custom House / School of Design with the new School of Art and Gallery extension.

The new extension more than doubled the size of the building, providing two enormous sculpture galleries, a life-drawing room, and workshops on the ground floor, while on the first floor were five large studios for the teaching of painting and other activities. A magnificent mahogany staircase, appropriately embellished with carved wooden sheaves of barley, leads to the panelled main landing and to three handsome exhibition galleries, in which are currently displayed the more important nineteenth and twentieth paintings in the gallery's collection. On this floor is also a magnificent library, entirely panelled in wood, with brass light fittings and glazed bookcases. Many of the books from this library were transferred to the new College of Art library in 1979, but those that remain bear mute testament to the history of the building, many of them bearing the imprint of the Royal Cork Institution or the Government School of Design.

The extension doubled the size of the school and provided for the first time purpose-built galleries for the exhibition of sculptures and paintings, as well as studios for teaching art. It gave Cork what must have been the finest art school in Ireland at that time. The wrought-iron gates at the entrance to the new School of Art and gallery building bear the date 1884, the year the extension and renovation of the building was completed. The official opening ceremony was held in April of the following year when the Prince of Wales (later King Edward VII) formally opened the building.

Today, the Crawford School of Art continues to flourish although it is no longer located in the Old Custom House, having been transferred to the former Technical School on Sharman Crawford Street in 1979. Now titled the Crawford College of Art and Design, it remains after the National College of Art and Design the most important third-level art college in the Republic of Ireland. Its former home, the Old Custom House, is now almost entirely given over to housing the Crawford Gallery and the head offices of the City of Cork Vocational Education Committee, which has ably administered the Gallery and the School of Art for the greater part of the twentieth century. While the relocation of the School of Art has diminished somewhat the intimate contact which long existed between it and the city's art collection, the Gallery has benefited from the increase exhibition space provided by the former studios of the School of Art. Most importantly the tradition.

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Scoil Ealaíne

Crawford Art School go luath sa 20ú hAois An Céad

Crawford Art School go luath sa 20ú hAois An Céad

Le linn an naoú haois déag bhí baint ag go leor daoine cumasacha le Cork School of Art, nó, mar a tugadh ina dhiaidh sin air, le Crawford School of Art; ach James Brenan, príomhoide na scoile ar feadh 29 bliain go dtí gur imigh sé go Baile Átha Cliath sa bhliain 1889, ba é siúd a bhunaigh an scoil go daingean sa staid is tábhachtaí a bhí aici riamh san oideachas ealaíne in Éirinn. Thug Strickland moladh don ‘ghnáthchiall, don ghéarchúis agus don stuaim’ a bhí aige, agus caithfidh sé dá iarrachtaí siúd a spreagadh William Horatio Crawford chun tacú leis an síneadh mór ar an scoil i 1884.

Leis an síneadh ar Cork School of Art tháinig roinnt gailearaithe iontacha nua saintógtha agus b’éigean athchóiriú a dhéanamh ar an bhfoirgneamh ar fad. Mar thoradh ar an bhflaithiúlacht sin, bhí an foirgneamh nua lena shloinne a thógáil, agus is é atá aige go dtí an lá atá inniu ann. Is é Arthur Hill, ón gcomhlacht ailtirí Hill & Co., a dhear an síneadh agus is é a rinne cuid mhaith den obair tógála foirgneamh Victeoireach is fearr i gCorcaigh, agus is oiriúnach agus is taitneamhach an úsáid shaintréitheach a bhain siad as brící dearga le haolchloch bhán Ag breithniú ó líníochtaí ailtireachta a chuir an gnólacht Hill & Co. isteach, is cosúil go raibh sé i gceist ar dtús go ndéanfaí Scoil Ealaíne agus Eolaíochtaí i dteannta na síntí agus an méid eile a bhí le cur leis an Sean-Teach Custaim i 1884, agus go deimhin, ar na geataí iarainn saoirsithe ag an mbealach isteach chuig Gailearaí Crawford atá inniu ann, ach is é an rud a tharla sa deireadh go ndearnadh na moltaí sin a ghearradh siar, agus is é Crawford School of Art an teideal foirmiúil a tugadh ar an bhfoirgneamh a sheasann anois ar Phlás Emmet.

An tsamhail scála a rinne an t-ailtire den fhoirgneamh nua a bhí beartaithe, tá sí fós i mbailiúchán príobháideach i gCorcaigh, agus is uaillmhianaí go mór í ó thaobh scála agus cóireála de ná an síneadh a cuireadh i gcrích. Sa tsamhail seo, agus sna pleananna talún a bhaineann léi, is léir gurbh é an rún bunaidh a bhí ann ealaín agus teicneolaíocht a mhúineadh faoi aon díon amháin, músaem ealaíne agus músaem eolaíochta araon ag cur lustre breise leis an bhfoirgneamh.

Bhí roinnt túiríní le bheith ag Crawford School of Science and Art, seachas an t-aon túirín ochtagánach amháin ar dlaoi mullaigh de chuid an fhoirgnimh é sa lá atá inniu, agus dá dtógfaí iad, bheadh roinnt mhaith foirgneamh cathrach náirithe ag an scoil. Mar is amhlaidh i gcás go leor tograí uaillmhianacha ailtireachta den sórt sin, foirgneamh dochreidte ab ea an Crawford School of Art nua, ainneoin gur leagan gearrtha siar de atá ann, agus gur léir feasacht níos géire ar shrianta airgeadais san fhoirgneamh a tógadh i ndáiríre. D’éirigh le Arthur Hill an síneadh nua a mheascadh le foirgneamh Shean-Teach Custaim 1724. Dealraíonn sé gur chuir sé de stró air féin aghaidh nua ar fad a chur ar an bhfoirgneamh a bhí ann leis na brící nua céanna, ionas go ndéanfadh an dá chuid comhchuibhiú lena chéile. An túr ochtagánach atá ar an bhfoirgneamh atá ann faoi láthair (saintréith de chuid ailtireacht Hill), is léiriú é ar an Sean-Teach Custaim/School of Design agus an School of Art agus an Gailearaí curtha mar shíneadh leis.

Chuir an síneadh nua níos mó ná a dhá oiread le méid an fhoirgnimh, dhá ghailearaí dealbh á gcur leis, chomh maith le seomra líníochta beo agus ceardlann ar urlár na talún, agus cúig stiúideo mhóra ar an gcéad urlár chun an phéintéireacht agus gníomhaíochtaí eile a theagasc. Ón staighre mór mahagaine, a bhfuil eorna ina síobha adhmaid snoite air, is féidir an príomh-halla painéalta agus trí ghailearaí taispeána áille a bhaint amach, áit a bhfuil cuid de na pictiúir is tábhachtaí ón naoú haois déag ar taispeáint i mbailiúchán an ghailearaí. Tá leabharlann iontach ar an urlár seo freisin, painéalú adhmaid ar fad déanta uirthi, le feistis solais práis agus cásanna leabhar gloinithe. Aistríodh go leor de na leabhair ón leabharlann seo go leabharlann an College of Art nua i 1979, ach an chuid díobh atá fágtha is teist iad ar stair an fhoirgnimh, go leor acu a bhfuil rian an Royal Cork Institution nó an Government School of Design.

Tháinig méadú faoi dhó ar mhéid na scoile agus den chéad uair bhí gailearaithe saintógtha ar fáil chun dealbha agus pictiúir a chur ar taispeáint, chomh maith le stiúideonna chun ealaín a theagasc. Is é an dáta 1884 atá ar na geataí iarainn saoirsithe ag an mbealach isteach chuig foirgneamh nua an School of Art and Gallery, an bhliain inar críochnaíodh síneadh agus athchóiriú an fhoirgnimh. Reáchtáladh an searmanas oscailte oifigiúil i mí Aibreáin na bliana dar gcionn nuair a rinne Prionsa na Breataine Bige (Rí Edward VII ina dhiaidh sin) an foirgneamh a sheoladh go foirmiúil.

Tá rath ar Crawford School of Art sa lá atá inniu ann go fóill cé nach bhfuil sé lonnaithe a thuilleadh sa Sean-Teach Custaim, mar gheall gur aistríodh í chuig ionad an Technical School a bhíodh ar Shráid Sharman Crawford i 1979. Coláiste Ealaíne agus Deartha Crawford a thugtar anois air, agus taobh amuigh den Choláiste Náisiúnta Ealaíne agus Deartha, is é fós an coláiste ealaíne tríú leibhéal is tábhachtaí i bPoblacht na hÉireann. An seanáras a bhí aige, an Sean-Teach Custaim, is é an t-aon úsáid a bhaintear geall leis ionad a chur ar fáil do Ghailearaí Crawford agus do phríomhoifigí City of Cork Vocational Education Committee, dream a bhfuil an Gailearaí agus an Scoil Ealaíne á riar go cumasach acu leis an gcuid is mó den fhichiú haois. Cé gur laghdaigh ar an teagmháil dhlúth a bhí ann le fada idir an Scoil Ealaíne agus bailiúchán ealaíne na cathrach, is mór an tairbhe don Scoil Ealaíne an spás taispeána méadaithe atá ar fáil in iar-stiúideonna na Scoile Ealaíne. Agus an traidisiún a bhaineann leo go mór mór.

Ar ais go barr

Emmett Place, Cork, Ireland
T12 TNE6
Tel: 021 480 5042
info@crawfordartgallery.ie

Christmas Opening Hours

Gallery Closed25 December 2022 Christmas Day26 December 2022 Stephens Day1 January 2023 New Year’s Day

10am–4pm     24 December 2022 Christmas Eve31 December 2022 New Year’s Eve

10am -5pm27 December – 30 December 2022

 

Opening Hours
N.B. Last entry is 15 minutes before closing

Monday–Saturday 10.00am–5.00pm*
Thursday until 8.00pm

Sundays and Bank Holidays
11.00 am4.00pm

*Second floor closes 15 minutes before closing
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