Every small town has its controversial figures but not every town has such a strong literary tradition, Askeaton County Limerick is Famous not only for its Franciscan Monastic Ruins, Knights Templar Tower, Hellfire Club and Norman castle. Askeaton shares a strong link with the De Vere family who lived on the nearby estate in Curraghchase, the De Vere family were big figure during the period known as the enlightenment and Aubrey De Vere was a good Friend and Contemporary of William Wordsworth. Although it is said that the De Vere family were well liked by locals, in part due to the charity during the Irish Famine and conversion to Roman Catholicism, the Anglo Irish were for the most part disliked and ostracized historical in Ireland. There is no doubt that outside of the area the De Vere's would have been subject to harsh treatment and wild assumptions.
Taking from this cue, I began to look at two books and writers whom for locals were contested in nature, albeit both in their respective generations. Paddy Cronin author of Home Wasn't Built in A Day and Roger Moran author of The Wildfowler, both books are based of the authors experiences in West Limerick. As I began to ask people in the town about the two writers it became apparent over time that both figures in their day were subject to harsh criticism. Although neither book references names or direct locations, people in the locality could easily interpret from the information given who the specific characters where in reference to. The Wildfowler dealt with poaching in the area, so there was surely at the time a lot of criticism directed towards Moran. It became apparent to me that although their were many fully formed opinions about both writers in the area, surely not everyone had read the book. There must have surely been a residual perception of them both left over in the communities collective sub-conscious, overheard utterances from parents and peers.
The rolling L.E.D. sign is placed in the Four-court of Twohig's Petrol Station, it is the perfect platform to communicate with customers as they idly fill their cars with fuel. As the body completes a laborious task the mind looks for other fuel, the sign is there waiting in direct line of sight with the intention of communicating with the customer about the "GREAT OFFERS TO BE FOUND IN STORE". The sign is an incredibly suitable platform to subliminally intervene with the towns collective sub-conscious. The message of both authors in this way can be anonymously communicated with the people of the local area, with out the pre-conceived notions usually associated with either author.
"When the bulk of the feathers are off, the bird is held by the neck over the fire..."
"Hub hub, hubby horse, hub hub again,
how many miles to Dublin, three score and ten
will i be back by candlelight, yes and back again
hub hub, hubby horse hub hub again."
This work was made with the help of Askeaton Contemporary Arts at the 9th Edition of Welcome to The Neighborhood curated by Michele Horrigan.
This work was also made possible with the kind help of the citizens of Askeaton, Co. Limerick and Twohigs Super-value, Askeaton, Co. Limerick for both collaboration and permitted use of the sign.
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