The weather has been, thankfully, very kind this year. After so many miserable ‘summers’ with rain falling much too often, and grey skies the order of the day, almost everyday, strolling along St Stephen’s Green which was bathed in late-September sunshine, was a delayed and exciting pleasure. The air was warm, the talk lively and everywhere there were paintings. Hundreds and hundreds of them in the biggest outdoor gallery the city could put on. You could be forgiven for thinking that you were walking in Paris or Florence such was the atmosphere and setting. Dublin – she looked great!
The exhibition, Peoples’ Art, is one of five such exhibitions held this year (the final one will be in early Dec) and is open to any artist, and as a result there is much to see and enjoy. Many established artists show their work alongside that of local amateurs. As that old saying goes ‘It’s all in the eye of the beholder,’ and when I passed along the crammed railings there were many beholders getting up close and interested. I could hear talk about where a certain painting was done, its inspiration and how was business going? Pretty good, I think, with the number of handshakes and smiles I saw. Buying a painting is one thing, but haggling with the artist over its price is just as important and a big part of the experience. It may not be like buying in Sotheby’s or Christie’s but a deal is a deal, and the success of the exhibition shows that a lot of haggling was done. Long may it continue, as the colourful spectacle is a real crowd pleaser even if you only walk by, slowly, of course, and enjoy the artistic pleasures on show.