Michael Warren (sculptor)

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Beneath the bow, 1991; Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin

Michael Warren (born 1950 in Gorey, County Wexford, Ireland) is an Irish sculptor who produces site-specific public art.

Inspired by Oisín Kelly, his art teacher at St Columba's College, Michael Warren studied at Bath Academy of Art, at Trinity College Dublin and, from 1971 to 1975, at the Accademia di Brera in Milan. He now lives and works in Co. Wexford.

He has a number of very visible works in Ireland, including the large sweeping wood sculpture in front of the Dublin Civic Offices. Wood Quay, where the civic offices stand, was the centre of Viking Dublin and the sculpture evokes the form, and the powerful grace, of a Viking ship. It also reflects vertically the horizontal sweep of the nearby Liffey as it enters its bay. A complex balance of meanings matching a delicate, though massive, balance of substance is typical of his work. Warren himself describes the useful ambiguity of abstraction (Hill 1998)

With Roland Tallon he created Tulach a' tSolais (Mound of Light), a memorial to the 1798 rebellion at Oulart Hill, County Wexford. Here, a room was hollowed out of a small hill; the room contains two abstract curved oak forms and is illuminated by natural light falling through a long slot in its ceiling and walls. Despite the unusual and abstract constitution of this memorial and despite the fraught political resonance of the rebellion, Tulach a' tSolais is popular and something of a local attraction. His Gateway in Dún Laoghaire was less popular with some local people and it was eventually removed and returned to the artist.[1]

At the northern entrance to the village of Leighlinbridge, County Carlow, is a sculpture by Michael Warren, depicting the thrones of the ancient seat of the Kings of South Leinster at Dinn Righ (The hill of the Kings). The Kings of Leinster lived near the village.[2]

Work on display[edit]


  1. ^ Gartland, Fiona (22 August 2015). "Controversial Dún Laoghaire sculpture returned to artist". The Irish Times. Retrieved 12 February 2020.
  2. ^ "Leighlinbridge". Carlow Tourism. Archived from the original on 17 November 2007. Retrieved 10 December 2007.

Further reading[edit]

  • Suzanne McNab (2002) Warren, Michael in Brian Lalor (Ed.), The Encyclopedia of Ireland. Dublin: Gill and Macmillan. ISBN 0-7171-3000-2
  • Judith Hill (1998) Irish public sculpture. Dublin: Four Courts Press. ISBN 1-85182-274-7
  • Rod Mengham and others (2010) Michael Warren: Unbroken Line. Carlow: Visual Centre for Contemporary Art & The George Bernard Shaw Theatre. ISBN 978-1-907537-02-8

External links[edit]