Anna Livia Moves To The Croppies

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The Lord Mayor of Dublin Andrew Montague will officially open the Anna Livia Sculpture at its new location in the Croppies Acre Memorial Park, Wolfe Tone Quay, Dublin 7 on Monday, 19th September 2011, at 11am.

The Lord Mayor Andrew Montague said, "Anna Livia was a favourite of Dubliners when in O’Connell Street and it is wonderful that she is now back beside the River Liffey – the river which inspired sculptor Eamonn O’Doherty. The Croppies Acre Memorial Park is a fitting new home for her.”    

Anna Livia is a 5.5metre cast bronze sculpture created by the late Eamonn O’Doherty to symbolise the River Liffey in female form.  It was commissioned in 1988 to mark Dublin’s millennium, by Dr. Michael Smurfit, in honour of his father.  The sculpture was originally located in O’Connell Street but had to be dismantled and put into storage during the regeneration phase of the street.         

In 2010, after consulting with the artist Eamonn O’Doherty, a decision was made to relocate the Anna Livia sculpture to the Croppies Acre Memorial Park. Dublin City Council Parks Department carried out improvement works to the park to facilitate the new feature and O’Doherty modified Anna Livia to suit her new surroundings.

Notes to the Editor

The Sculptor

Eamonn O’Doherty was born in Derry.  He created many large-scale public sculptures in Ireland, Britain and the United States.   His sculptures include ‘Crann an Oir’ (Tree of Gold) at the Central Bank Plaza Dublin and the ‘Galway Hookers’ in Eyre Square Galway.  He lectured for many years at the Faculty of Architecture at the Dublin Institute of Technology as well as at other universities around the world.  He was also a talented painter, photographer and musician.  He passed away recently, on the 4th August 2011.

The Croppies Acre

Recordings from 1756 show that the plot of land where the park is located was associated with the Military Recreation Grounds further east on Wolfe Tone Quay.  Later in 1838 the Ordnance Survey drawings show that the triangular plot of land now existing was defined by railings and separated from the Military Grounds.

The lands were sold in February 1843 to the Commissioners of Woods and Forests and in 1860 responsibility for its maintenance was transferred to the Commissioners of Public Works.

In 1866 a gun platform was constructed to display cannon guns and cannon balls that were captured by the British Army during the Crimean War and the area became known as the Crimean War Trophy Plot.

This plot was later acquired by Dublin Corporation in 1969 to accommodate road realignment, however with the construction of the nearby Frank Sherwin Bridge across the River Liffey the land was handed over to the Parks Department in 1982 for development as a pocket park, the layout of which remains intact today.

A decision was taken in 2010 to relocate the Anna Livia sculpture to a small pond located within the park, Improvements works were carried out on the park to facilitate the new feature and allowed for the following:

  • Upgrading of the pond area and installation of a concrete plinth to accommodate the positioning of the sculpture.
  • Installation of new granite slabs around the perimeter of the pond.
  • Provision of new underwater and overhead decorative lighting.
  • Provision of a water pump feature to simulate water / river flow past the sculpture.
  • Upgrading of existing footpath layout.
  • Installation of a new pedestrian gate.
  • The cost of the upgrading works was €35,000.