Sobre a palestra:
At the opening of the twentieth century, the city of Dublin became the epicentre of cultural energy – notably in terms of drama and poetry, with the foundation of the Abbey Theatre, the plays of J. M. Synge and Augusta Gregory, and the poetry of W. B. Yeats. This cultural ‘Revival’ was accompanied by shifts of political allegiance which would eventually, after the outbreak of World War I, see the rise of separatist nationalism, the decline of the more moderate ‘Home Rule’ movement, and finally an armed revolution against British rule. In the early 1900s, however, there was a general expectation that self- ;‐government would come by constitutional means, and Dublin would be the capital of an autonomous Ireland. For Lady Gregory, Yeats and other cultural ‘power- ;‐brokers’, this required the acquisition of cultural capital; and Gregory’s nephew, an art dealer and philanthropist called Hugh Lane, became the driving force in the effort to create a gallery of modern art in the city. This opened in temporary accommodation in 1908, and contained the nucleus of an astonishing collection of modern French paintings by Manet, Renoir, Monet, Daumier, Vuillard, Degas and others. But the campaign to build a permanent gallery to house the collection became intensely controversial, and was still uncertain when Lane was drowned on the Lusitania in 1915. While his intention to leave his modern art collection to Dublin was clear, due to a legal quirk the paintings were claimed by the National Gallery in London – inaugurating a contentious situation which is still only partly resolved today. The story of Lane and his paintings intersects with fascinating issues in the history of Irish nationalism, cultural politics and Anglo- ;‐Irish relations: all of these themes feature in Professor Foster’s lecture, and in Thaddeus O’Sullivan’s film which will follow later in Cinemateca.
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