Take it from me, a bystander, that when you are under the spell of your own time you are as interesting to watch as were those before; it is always the same plot: Soul – Soul. It was your humanity in response that adds life to it and makes tending it so worthwhile. You are our television – Dennis Severs 1948 – 1999
The Zibaldone is a casual art form which originated in 14th century Venice where merchants used notebooks as part of their day to day business. Unlike their upper-class counterparts, who mostly stuck to Latin, these merchants wrote in the local Italian dialect. They were also more likely to bring together all kinds of work and play into one small, portable book. Alongside their workaday notes they drew boats and people and jotted down stories and other items of personal interest.
I described how the dolphins had danced on an evening of silken calm, leaping clear of the water in graceful arcs that crossed in pairs; as I had sat in a little field above the bay to watch, their plunges had been the only sound in the world. He listened to me expressionlessly, then turned his eyes to the dingy window and the dingy sky beyond. “That’s right” he said, and on Sunday morning they were all kneeling on the beach!”
Words: Tim Robinson, Stones of Aran: Pilgrimage. Image: detail from Inisheer Zibaldone by JesseJames.
It is a pity indeed to travel and not get this essential sense of landscape values. You do not need a sixth sense for it. It is there if you just close your eyes and breathe softly through your nose; you will hear the whispered message, for all landscapes ask the same question in the same whisper. I am watching you – are you watching yourself in me?
Words: Lawrence Durrell, Spirit Of Place: Letters And Essays On Travel. Image: JesseJames.
A seat located in Firhouse where the artists found inspiration.
It is said that this was JesseJames’s favourite seat in Firhouse. Situated on the village greenand overlooking Saint Vincent de Paul’s Charity Shop and Moran’s Pharmacy, they sat here while they were reflecting on their art.
A man on An Trá Inis Oírr, who with his wife had been a regular visitor to the island stretching back over 50 years, said “my wife remembers that for 3 seconds in 1963, the whole island turned purple.”