Cubism under a Chilly Sky

I noticed this cubist-inspired building facade this morning, while walking down Liffey Street in Dublin.

After the dazzling sunrise Thursday morning, a covering of clouds had rolled in.  This cover suspended the melting process, extending the pre-dawn frost into the morning.

I was scurrying along en route to an all-day seminar.  The topics being covered (leadership and change) are central to the paper I’m writing at the moment.  So I’d signed up to attend this event hosted by DIT’s Learning, Teaching, and Technology Centre to see how Irish folks talk about the topic and frame the issues.

On this particular morning the sidewalks — which the Irish refer to as footpaths — were still slick.  A thin layer of frozen mist remained.

This distracted me from capturing images for the first few blocks of my walk.

It wasn’t too long, however, before a facade that I’d never-before noticed captured my gaze.  I dug around for my camera and started to compose.  I was eager to show you this built example of cubism.

The Cublist Museum in Prague, a built example of cubist. Photo downloaded from Portal of Prague.

The Cublist Museum in Prague, a built example of cubist. The building is known as the House of the Black Madonna. Photo downloaded from Radio Prague website.

Unlike most styles of art, cubism never really flourished in architecture.  It’s rare to find built expressions of cubism most anywhere but Prague.  Portal of Prague explains, “Prague is the Mecca of Cubism lovers. This is not only because some of the Prague pre war art collectors were in favour of this style but mainly due to the fact that Prague is the only city with so many cubist buildings. The worlds unique buildings were build within four years from 1911 until the beginning of the First World War.”

I speak from experience when I say that the sky in Prague is often chilly.  I visited with a group of Hampton University students one chilly week in March several years ago.

Here in Dublin on this particular morning, the lights on this facade brought the building to life.  The cubist facade glowed warmly against the steel-grey sky.

The chilly sky actually helped me to see something I’d overlooked many times before.

Juxtaposed buildings.

Reflection of skyline in the Liffey River.

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