Famine Memorial is located along the Liffey River near Custom House Quay in the Dublin Docklands. It was a gift from famous Dubliners to the city and the plaques on the pavement list their names. It consists of several statues of thin and starving people (and one dog) who seem to be walking towards the outbound ships in the hopes of finding a better life in another country.
The memorial was presented to the city in 1997 and created by local Dublin artist Rowan Gillespie to commemorate the Great Famine between 1845 and 1852. A potato blight destroyed almost the entire potato harvest during those years. As potatoes were the main food source at the time, Ireland lost around one million people to starvation and disease. Around another million people emigrated, mostly to America, Australia, and Great Britain, hoping to find a better future elsewhere.
The life-sized bronze statues have a very powerful effect on the viewer. They illustrate the misery and despair of the people during that dark time in Ireland's history.
Famine Memorial is well worth a visit at night when the statues are illuminated, giving them an eerie look that makes them an even more immediate reminder of this terrible time.
Famine Memorial Reviews
Just happened upon these sculptures on walk from hotel. We found these sculptures very moving and could sense the desparation and exhaustion of the people they depict.
Several years ago I was in Dublin with my truck for the Guiness Convension and I was walking alongside the Liffy River when I came accross these statues. I was mesmorised and stunned by them. I stood for over an hour just staring at each charecter. I will never forget them, they seriously impacted me to want to know more about the potatoe famine.
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