‘Collins Rising’ My new, limited edition screen print will be launched Thursday 10th March at Damn Fine Print – 31 signed and numbered prints only.
I’ve teamed up with Damn Fine Print to produce an exclusive limited edition Screenprint of #CollinsRising // launch part Thursday 10th March at their studio in 32 North Brunswick Street Stoneybatter Dublin. To buy this limited edition print click here
Origins to ‘Duty Free State’ (Collins Rising)
For God’s sake, give me one free night to be a human being!” – exclaimed Michael Collins to his fellow rebels in the self titled,1996 film by Neil Jordan. These words became the starting point for my original Collins stencil entitled, ‘Duty Free State’ ten years ago.
From his early twenties, Michael Collins was involved in the struggle for Irish independence. From fighting in the Easter Rising to the negotiations table at 10 Downing street 6 years later, Collins dedicated his life to the dream of an Irish Republic.
While much has been written about his achievements, I often wondered about what this young Corkonian had to sacrifice to achieve these goals. Ask any committed activist and they will tell you that their cause often comes a personal price. Committed volunteers like Collins never got leisure time, bonuses, holidays or luxury goods. They dedicated their waking hours to defeating their oppressors so others could be set free.
Our little republic is not perfect, but we are not under the dominion of unelected monarchs, we have a constitution and we are free to utilize the tools of democracy, freedom of association, freedom of speech, freedom of assembly. Liberty should never be considered a luxury, it is a fundamental human right.
If Michael had more time after the Civil war, he might have travelled the world, he might have got married to his sweetheart, raised a family. We might have spotted him striding down the street, shopping bags in hand after buying something nice for himself or his girlfriend. My screen print, ‘Duty Free State’ is an aspirational piece of work about a man who missed so much because he cared too much.
Because of men and women like Collins, I enjoy the freedom to satirize icons like Michael without fear of restriction or the threat of imprisonment and for that I’m grateful.
Michael Collins you deserve one free night off.