Saturday 20 January 2018

A snub to our heritage

Bernard Shaw's onetime house in Synge Street, Dublin, is closed. So are the James Joyce tower in Sandycove and the Irish Museum of Modern Art in Kilmainham. Most of the National Gallery is closed, along with several rooms in the Hugh Lane Gallery. Outside Dublin, inaccessible sites include the museum in Nora Barnacle's house in Galway.

For disclosing this disgraceful state of affairs, the country is indebted to artist Robert Ballagh. Many of us will have visited one or more of those locations, found them closed but not realised how many existed. Now Mr Ballagh has given us a list. Sadly, we can be sure that as more information comes in, the list will lengthen.

The artist, describing himself as "ashamed and profoundly depressed", first heard of the closures when he met an American couple, "cultural tourists", on a train journey from Galway.

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