Historic Church of St. Patrick – Toledo, Ohio

The Historic St. Patrick Church of Toledo with its Amhurst blue sandstone exterior was dedicated in April of 1901.

The Historic St. Patrick Church of Toledo with its Amhurst blue sandstone exterior was dedicated in April of 1901.

Back in December, I had a chance to do a little bit of shooting in Toledo, Ohio. Seemingly a classic Midwestern industrial town. But if that’s all you see there, you’re missing so much of the beauty of “The Glass City” and its architecture.

The Historic St. Patrick’s Church near downtown Toledo is a gem. Construction began in 1892 at the corner of S. 13th and Lafayette (now Avondale) Streets, the site of the original church building which by the previous year had declined to an unsafe state.

Wood carved scenes over the right and left exterior doors depict the Works of Mercy.

The Gothic structure that stands today took nearly nine years to complete from cornerstone to dedication. While the church was first used on Christmas Day 1900, it was formally dedicated four months later, on April 13, 1901, with a capacity of 1,400.

For more information on the church and parish, click here http://stpatshistoric.org to visit the Web site.

 

 

Chinese Lion Dance, Cleveland Asian Festival 2013

The Kwan Family Lion Dance Team performs at the 2013 Cleveland Asian Festival.

The Kwan Family Lion Dance Team performs at the 2013 Cleveland Asian Festival.

The traditional Chinese Lion Dance helped open the 2013 Cleveland Asian Festival on Saturday, May 18. Returning to perform the traditional dance was the Kwan Family Lion Dance Team.

The Lion Dance is different from the Dragon Dance in that a lion has only a pair of people creating the animal’s movements hidden under the costume, while Dragon dances demand several people and are usually visible. The movements are based on Chinese martial arts and are accompanied by music, most noticeably a vigorous drum that sets the varied pacing throughout the dance.

If you visit the Kwan Family Lion Dance Facebook page, you’ll notice that the group lists itself in the category of “athlete.” And with good reason. Watch them perform and you’ll see not only a strenuous routine, but the hours of preparation the discipline demands are clearly evident.

You can find the Cleveland Asian Festival online here: http://clevelandasianfestival.org/2013/

You can find the Kwan Family on Facebook here: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Kwan-Lion-Dance/271823607012

Ruairi Hurley: Quiet Intensity

Hurley Ruairi Summerfest 2006 online

One of my favorite Cleveland musicians, Dublin native Ruairi Hurley is a staple of his adopted city’s music scene. Dude has appeared regularly with a couple of different lineups, among them the famed Pitch the Peat and Fior Gael, more than a few sit-ins with The Portersharks and any number of pickup sessions with some of Northeast Ohio’s most talented musicians.

Tough to say where he’s more supreme, his guitar or vocals. When he’s on both you’re in for a hell of a ride. Whether he knows it or not, he’s established his signature the past few years with a driving version of “Black Vincent” that’d make Richard Thompson think Ruairi wrote the damn thing.

This is a B&W film scan from the last edition of the now defunct Irish Summerfest back in 2006 at Classic Park in Eastlake, Ohio. Hurley was performing with the talent-heavy-to-the-tipping-point Brace Yourself Bridget. The shot’s a bit soft; it was a challenge working with the light (or lack thereof) inside a tent and shooting through a Sigma 300mm zoom.

Still, I like it – because it capture’s the man’s quiet intensity. Whenever, wherever and with whomever he performs, Hurley never disappoints.

– TMulloy

Mini Tower, Dookinella, Co. Mayo

 

Dookinella1

This small tower of stones is certainly a curious sight on the beach at Dookinella beach, at the far eastern end of Keel Strand on Achill Island, in Co. Mayo, Ireland. There are no markings as to what it’s supposed to be or who built it.

I’ve asked a few of the locals about it and they were stumped, as well. Some say that it appears to be a miniature of one of the towers of 16th Century leader Grace O’Malley – or Granuaile, the “Pirate Queen,” as she is known in Irish folklore – that dot the landscape of Ireland’s Western Coast. But that’s as close to an answer as anyone I’ve spoken to has been able to come up with.

If anyone can provide more information I’d be grateful.

– TMulloy

Just a Drop

Whenever offered a drink of whiskey, my father’s uncle had his classic, polite Irishman’s response: “Just the fill o’ me tooth” – meaning a very little, enough only to fill the size of his tooth. Well, it was readily apparent he meant the opposite of that – pour him a shot and a good one, at that. But for the Irish, man or woman, who likes a bit of the “water of life” – the name comes from the Gaelic “uisce beatha” (ish’keh ba’ha) – saying yes to the offer also meant exercising the manners of feigned indifference, pretending to only desire the smallest amount.

Just a drop. I’ll have a wee bit. A taste. A short one. The fill of me tooth.

These were the phrases that ran through my head when I saw the shot glasses and bottle of Jameson loaded in with the rest of the equipment by Cleveland Celtic rockers Marys Lane for a photo shoot at Cleveland’s long-shuttered Variety Theatre.

The glass was tiny by most standards, yet it rested perfectly in the palm or on the fingertips. A pleasing vessel. Deceiving, as well. For like the indulgence in a drop, a taste, a wee bit, it appears slight while slyly cradling a good deal more “uisce” than a standard shot glass.

It deserved it’s own portrait.

To your health.

— TMulloy

Photography Exhibit Opening: Friday, October 26, Breen Center for the Performing Arts

 

A retrospective of Mulloy’s work in more than 30 pieces, including his black & white Cleveland streetscapes and landscapes from the West of Ireland, both of which convey a sense of place while illustrating the common wonder of natural and manmade environments.

Also featuring a collection of his original concept Autograms: Handheld, moving-camera long exposures of nighttime street scenes shot from inside a moving auto, akin to painting with light.

Join Mulloy in the Breen Center lobby for complimentary beverages and hors d’oeuvres. All are welcome. Parking in Breen Center lot, free.

Traditional Irish music provided by Brian Holleran & Co.

For more on The Breen Center for Performing Arts, visit: http://www.ignatius.edu/breencenter

Exhibit continues through November 16.