Return journeys

The first performance in Anu’s Dublin Lockout-inspired project, Thirteen, brings us, by rail, towards two visions of a collapse

Thirteen: Citizen X

Meet at the corner of Jervis Street and Upper Abbey Street


Prepare to make a journey. The first event of Anu's Thirteen project, a series of works that trace ripples of the Dublin Lockout into the present day, asks you to first download an MP3 (from, buy a Luas ticket, and follow instructions. In the first of director Louise Lowe's subtle city subversions, the pleasant, neutral voice of the Luas announcer becomes our guide: Look around. Notice the new Rosie Hackett bridge. Follow the girl in the red jacket. Remember you're being watched.


But we are the watchers here, alighting in a soulless business district to follow a stranger to work, and a blank city of broken promises becomes a canvas for Owen Boss’s projections, intermingling images of then and now. “We shall never be safe from the tenement slums of Dublin,” comes a century-old warning. It may seem crass to overlay two images of property collapse – the Church Street tenement tragedy and the current mortgage crisis – but Lowe’s method has a more impassioned and unsettling purpose. In 1913, tragedy and uproar became huge public displays. Now it takes an artistic intervention to bring countless, isolated sufferings to the surface. The art is elegant and stirring. The city, though, ought to explode.

Until Sep 21

Peter Crawley

Peter Crawley

Peter Crawley, a contributor to The Irish Times, writes about theatre, television and other aspects of culture