Last week I took a stroll down to Ranelagh - my neighbourhood - which together with Rathmines is postcoded Dublin 6, to see what was on during the now yearly Ranelagh Arts Festival.
As I approached the heart of Ranelagh, I was suddenly reminded of Magritte and his "This is not a pipe" painting.
Here, when you got to Ranelagh, you also say that you go to the Triangle.
If you look at the map you can clearly see that this IS a triangle, but we human don’t live in 2 dimensions. Look at these two pictures, the triangularity of this particular spot is debatable (same place with more than 100 years apart).
But look this year the festival organizers were adamant that we would be reminded that this place was indeed a triangle.
They even tasteful chose some of the typical plants that grow in local gardens. How considerate! A few years ago they even built this weird pyramid right in the middle of the Triangle.
So why insist on filling this area with reminders that the place is in fact not a triangle ??? A guilty conscience no doubt! You see the Ranelagh Triangle is somewhat of a Bermuda Triangle, whole buildings disappear from there...
For people of a certain generation the Triangle is associated with a specific smell reminiscent of the famous Parisian "pissotières" (I believe this word is sufficiently clear that I don't need to translate it).
The Triangle had a certain mystique. There used to be a red brick edifice in the middle of the road very similar to this one
You guessed right, this building used to be a public convenience for gentlemen.
What went on in there remains a secret never to be told by its male visitors. This place had mystique. Did George Micheal ever visit it ? You can imagine which kind of rumours were associated with this edifice, it is very likely that all sorts of illicit activities were going on in there, and even if they weren't, it did give the area an air of danger....So, you see, this place had to go. Despite its seedy beauty, the aul’ triangle went jingle jangle for the last time some cold morning of 2001, and that was the end of shedding a tear for Parnell in the middle of Ranelagh village.
However, do not despair, I’m off campaigning for the ultimate piece of art that I think by right belongs to the Triangle…..
It's none other than one of Marcel Duchamp’s ready mades Fontaines, it is sort of triangular, and … it is not a urinal!
(I don't expect many comments on this piece!)