Wednesday, February 27, 2013


The Emerald Isle as seen through Searle's eyes.  Drawn in 1962 but published in 'Holiday' magazine April 1963.

'The human traffic on O'Connell Street, watched over by an angelic harp'.

At Trinity College this rebellious student reads Brendan Behan while the others are engrossed with Shaw, Wilde et al.

'Often, in Dublin, it is considered more sporting to loose your shirt than to keep it on.  Hence the popularity of horses.'

'Tears flow easy in a Dublin pub, but not even the heartbreaking songs from a brendanbehanish bard can truly water the beer.'

"It's Guinness!" O'Connell Bridge and the Liffey June 1962 (unpublished)

The Quays

Merrion Square

'Ireland is poor because it is infested by tricky thieves called leprechauns, who diligently hold up the exchequer in broad fairy light.  As greedy as their four-footed helpers, they bury their loot in crocks at the rainbow's end.'

'With his head not quite tucked underneath his arm, Dublin's logomachic chronicler, James Joyce, haunts the Martello tower at Sandycove.  As everyone recalls, the opening scene of his 783-page ulyssiad unravels here-a conversation of sorts between stately, plump Black Mulligan and moody, broody Stephen Dadalus.'
'The Antic Arts- Dublin's Lusty Theatre'

The drawing above recently sold at auction was not published as part of the article.

Searle illustrated this report by S. J. Perelman on 'the haunted manor of Poltrooney'.

Illustrations for 'In Quest of Beer' by Frank O'Connor
HOLIDAY magazine 1957 January

'Paris Folklore-Irish pubs all over' International Herald Tribune 15-16 March 1997
pg 24 'Green Power: the Irish Pub Invasion' by Mary Blume

Drawn for HOLIDAY but unpublished


docnad said...

Thank you, Matt. These are quite extraordinary, as always!

Matt Jones said...

You're welcome. Appreciate the feedback. They're real beauties aren't they- I'm wondering if Ronald actually went to Ireland or if these are more like 'Rocking Chair' observations?

docnad said...

Oh, I'm pretty certain the Holiday drawings were made on the scene.

Conor McHale said...

Speaking as a resident, I think they were made on location. The house on the left in the 'Merrion Square,' image is actually where Oscar WIlde was born. I wonder was Searle aware of this - he must have been.
The tallest monument in the O Connell Street image was of Nelson's Pillar, it was blown up in 1966 by the IRA and has since been replaced by a horrendous stainless steel spike.
Wonderful to see these, thanks for putting them up.

Matt Jones said...

I consulted Russell Davies' biog of Searle and it confirms that he did indeed take a trip to Dublin in 1962.

Matt Jones said...

Conor- thanks for the info. I saw that steel spike a couple years back-I wondered about its history.