Tuesday 23 October 2018

Cartoonist tears strips off Spire

Ken Sweeney

Ken Sweeney

A RETIRED architect has wreaked havoc on some of his least favourite Dublin landmarks by destroying them in a new comic novel.

Last year artist Gerry Hunt enjoyed an unexpected publishing hit with his graphic novel of the Easter 1916 Rising, 'Blood Upon the Rose'.

Now the 74-year-old is back with another comic book featuring the capital city.

'Draugr in Dublin City' tells the story of a dead Viking buried in Dublin who awakens from his thousand-year sleep after robbers plunder treasure from his grave.

The avenging Dane then goes on the rampage to recover his possessions but finds himself more infuriated by modern additions to the city skyline, which include The Spire, Liberty Hall, and the new €380m National Conference Centre on George's Quay.

"I had to have him attacking these places. I really couldn't let it go," the artist told the Irish Independent.

The comic artist, who worked as an architect with the Industrial Development Agency (IDA) before turning his hand to drawing cartoons, said it was a day spent taking pictures around Dublin that inspired the actions of his Viking.

"I just thought The Spire, that has to go; and I've hated the top of Liberty Hall for years. It's like a bloody accordion you would squeeze in and out. The new Conference Centre isn't big enough either, with too much contrast between the stone and the glass. Mind you, I had my Viking Draugr borrow a few panes to make a paraglider," he said.

'Draugr in Dublin City' by Gerry Hunt will be published later this year.

A spokesman for O'Brien Press said that 'Blood Upon the Rose' had "exceeded all expectations". "It's sold to schools, bookshops and comic shops. We've now achieved sales of 6,000 copies and it's already on a second edition. The appeal of the book has been enormous and to the widest audience possible," the spokesman for O'Brien told the Irish Independent.

Irish Independent

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