Dubliners is a unique photographic record of life in the city at the turn of the last century, a period immortalised in the literary works of James Joyce. The exhibition featured the work of Co Monaghan-born photographer John J Clarke who was particularly talented at capturing close-up, candid photographs of people going about their daily business. The images, which were recorded between 1897 and 1904, provided an intimate view of the city and its inhabitants during the period in which Joyce was to set his works.
The locations which figure most prominently in the exhibition included O’Connell Street, Grafton Street, Merrion Square and the area near the Royal University on Earlsfort Terrace where Clarke studied medicine for a number of years. The exhibition also features photographs of Dun Laoghaire and Bray.
Dubliners first opened at the National Photographic Archive in Temple Bar in 2001. Three years later, due to popular demand, the National Photographic Archive decided to mount a second showing; this exhibition also proved extremely successful, attracting record numbers of visitors, including tourists and Joyce aficionados, many of whom had travelled to Dublin to take part in the Bloomsday Centenary celebrations.
As a travelling exhibition, Dubliners has already appeared at the National Art Gallery in Sofia, Buglaria, and at the ATHINAIS Gallery in Athens, Greece.