Thursday 8 December 2016

Sky blue... the view from above Dublin

Frank Coughlan on a new photography book that offers a bird's eye view of Dublin and some of its most iconic landmarks

Published 01/11/2015 | 02:30

The Great South Wall. Captured on a summer's day, the iconic breakwater stretches from thePoolbeg Lighthouse to Ringsend and the city beyond. Taken from 'Dublin: The View from Above' by Dennis Horgan, published by The Collins Press (2015)
The Great South Wall. Captured on a summer's day, the iconic breakwater stretches from thePoolbeg Lighthouse to Ringsend and the city beyond. Taken from 'Dublin: The View from Above' by Dennis Horgan, published by The Collins Press (2015)
A view from O'Connell Bridge looking south towards College Green and Trinity College.
Dublin: The View from Above
This overhead perspective of St Stephen's Green shows it in all its colourful glory with trees surrounding an ornate garden and playground.
Heuston Station. Formerly Kingsbridge Station, Heuston was commissioned in 1846 and is based on the design of an Italian palazzo. It serves the southern, southwestern and western lines.
From above, these storage tanks at St James's Gate Brewery take on a whole new appearance, reminiscent of a scene from a Star Wars film.
Ballsbridge with the Aviva Stadium is to the west, while the eastwards view overlooks Elm Park Golf Club towards Ringsend.
Glasnevin Cemetery opened in 1832 as a nondenominational graveyard and is the largest cemetery in the country. Daniel O'Connell, 'The Liberator', is interred here.

You might know Dublin intimately. Born and bred there, you probably see it as part of who you are. Or you might be one of those who have made it your home and have a different feel for the city. Two different types of love and belonging, but both authentic all the same. Either way, you will rarely have seen Dublin from the sort of perspective that aerial photographer Dennis Horgan specialises in. And it will take your breath away.

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Dublin: The View From Above is a hardback coffee-table book of 240 stunning shots, mostly taken from clear-blue skies, the sort of sunny days of brilliant light and defined shadows that show off the town in the most flattering of poses.

From a vantage of 1,700ft, Horgan starts at the mouth of the Liffey, putting into sharp focus Dublin's cherished if unpolished jewellery, giving clues to her Viking origins through to its glorious days of Empire and on to the now, and its glittering, if sometimes brash, totems to modernism.

It doesn't neglect the county's coastal coves, seaside villages and islands, either, the sort of places that denizens retreat to when the noise of their city lives becomes too shrill. The newer suburbs, which have spread out west like untended shrubbery, are tactfully avoided.

But I'll let the pictures tell their own story, each - after all - is worth a thousand words. In this book it is fair to say they are worth a bit more.

Dublin: The View From Above by Dennis Horgan (Collins Press) €24.99

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