Dublin Photographs 1963

My Dublin 1963 // My Dubliners 2020

Photographs & Commentary

By: Alen MacWeeney

Publication Date: 9 December 2021


My Dublin 1963 // My Dubliners 2020 by Alen MacWeeney

These 89 black & white photographs taken by Alen MacWeeney in Dublin in 1963/5 are spontaneous images of Dublin and Dubliners in all areas of the city, a street odyssey reflecting a cross section of the people, their habits and behaviour, ten years before Ireland joined the European Union and the wider world.

The text on facing pages consists in social commentary gleaned from a posting by Pesya Altman, co-author, artist and partner of MacWeeney, of each of the book’s photographs on Dublin social media platform Down Memory Lane, eliciting a flood of 70,000 responses during 2020. The idea for the book was born.

These photographs of Dublin and Dubliners in 1963 have pertinent social and historical value as attested by their placement in numerous US Universities and museums. The text offers a novel way of understanding and appreciating a full gamut of Dublin personalities through their reactions to the posting of these photographs during the current pandemic. The responses ranged from wonder and incredulity to heated derision, offset by the hilarity that characterize Dubliners. The richness of the comments will be of interest to any Irish person curious to glimpse Dublin life in the ’60s and to gauge the reactions of Dubliners today. They are entrancing, comical, absurd and poignant, adding a unique dimension to Irish social history.

MacWeeney’s work partakes of the tradition of reportage by Walker Evans, Cartier Bresson and Robert Frank. In the early sixties he assisted the legendary photogapher Richard Avedon in Paris and New York.


Alen MacWeeney’s photographs have appeared internationally in magazines and books: among them, The New Yorker, The New York Times Magazine, Esquire, G.Q., Life, The World of Interiors, American Photographer, and Aperture, and others. His books: Irish Walls; & Ireland; Stone Walls and Fabled Landscapes; Bloomsbury Reflections; Charleston: A Bloomsbury House and Garden; The Home of the Surrealists; Spaces for Silence; Irish Travellers, Tinkers No More; Once Upon a Time in Tallaght; and, most recently, Under the Influence (2012).

MacWeeney’s photographs are in the permanent collections the MoMA, New York, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Art Institute of Chicago, Philadelphia Museum of Art, Museum of Fine Arts Houston, among others.

He has had solo shows in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, London, Paris, Stockholm and Dublin. His work is held in many private collections. His archive now resides in Cork University. His film Traveller, based on his early photographs of the Irish Travellers, was broadcast on RTÉ and BBC 4, and included in Itinérances, 28th Festival Cinéma d’Alès.

He lives in New York City and Sag Harbor, with yearly travels to Ireland.

Available on backorder

Weight 0.5 kg
Dimensions 240 × 300 mm
Publication Date

9 December 2021


Fabric Hardback with photographs, 208pp

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