A severe case of mistaken identity occurred on Wednesday at the unveiling of Linda Brunker's magnificent sculpture, Overflow, at Pembroke Square apartments on Grand Canal Street in Dublin.
An enthusiastic Fianna Fail supporter was heard to chirp: "Give us a kiss, Charlie" to a perturbed-looking Albert Reynolds, there to view the unveiling with his wife, Kathleen.
Linda's sculpture was specially commissioned by Cosgrave Homes, who wanted a suitable piece for the entrance of their development. The female figure, more than 8 feet tall, is caste in bronze strips and was inspired by Patrick Kavanagh's canal bank walk. The effect is mesmerising: other property developers should take note.
Also admiring Linda's handiwork was the Minister for Arts Culture and the Gaeltacht, Sile de Valera, who is settling into her new job. She said the development of inland waterways would be a priority: she added that the Irish lessons were coming along swimmingly. The Cosgrave brothers showed off their plush development to Ruairi Quinn and Eoin Ryan while Lord Mayor John Stafford, he of funeral parlour fame, made an early exit. Arthur Gibney, president of the Royal Hibernian Committee, and Ken McDonald of estate agents Hooke and McDonald were also there. Not surprisingly, the Brunker family had flocked en masse to the unveiling. Former Miss Ireland, Amanda Brunker, who is younger sister of the sculptor, was her usual, ebullient self, sporting a pair of tinted glasses. These, she explained, were procured in the US for "three bucks" after a recent trip to Memphis for Dead Elvis Week with her long-time boyfriend, producer Brian Reddin. Budding actress Amanda can be seen on TV in the new Dunnes Stores ad. Linda Brunker was accompanied by her husband, Denis Cullen. For her proud parents, Eddie and Elizabeth Brunker, the occasion was a double celebration as the unveiling of their daughter's first public sculpture coincided with their 35th wedding anniversary.