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Tattered Outlaws of History

Artist Name(s) Dan Dubowitz & Fearghus O'Conchuir
Artwork title Tattered Outlaws of History
Context/Background Artists Dan Dubowitz and Fearghus O’Conchuir, both members of the Fingal public art panel, made several site visits to Fingal, following which they were both taken with the presence of Fingal's twelve Martello Towers. Situated along Fingal’s coast, they have a variety of uses, but mostly derelict, standing in isolation in the landscape. They set about getting into each tower and the artists began filming. Fearghus and dancer Bernadette Iglich began to intercept the towers through movement. They felt a suitable location for the display of the films was Skerries Martello Tower which is owned by Fingal County Council.


The work is a twelve screen installation of performances filmed from the gun turrets of each of Fingal's Martello towers. A reunion of the towers built to defend against a Napoleonic invasion that never came. The artists placed a tripod where the cannon would have been on the roof of each of the towers and built a motor that rotates continuously through 360 degrees. The camera takes in twelve revolutions in the hour. Filmed in one take in which time performers are seen and heard. The screens were placed in a semi circular position in the roof of the tower and can be interpreted as a family of towers temporarily reunited.


A brochure is available about the project and the Martello Towers, and serves almost as a heritage trail as it is the first time the towers have been grouped in this way. Other mediation includes RTE News coverage, Irish Times and  Evening Herald reviews, TG4 Imeall, and radio coverage.


Dan Dubowitz is a multidisciplinary artist and architect based in Italy. Originally trained in Architecture at Sheffield University, and after a spell working for Peter Eisenman in New York, his media broadened to include photography, film, and installation work with appropriated artifacts and spaces. Dubowitz is known is internationally for his work on wastelands and his artwork masterplans for public spaces.

Fearghus O’Conchuir is an independent choreographer and dance artist. Brought up in An Rinn, he completed degrees in English and European Literature at Magdalen College, Oxford, before training at London Contemporary Dance School. His current creative preoccupation is the relationship between bodies and buildings in the context of urban regeneration, a preoccupation that has manifested itself in film and live performance in Europe, North America and China.

Commission Type Local Authority
Commissioner Name Fingal County Council
Commissioning process The artists were selected as collaborators on Fingal's Public Art Panel.The formation of the panel was an open process and artists are invited to work with the Council on their chosen brief.
Artform Dance,Visual Arts,Film
Percent for art Yes
Budget Range 35000 - 70000 euro
Location Skerries
County Dublin
Town Skerries
Street Address Red Island Martello Tower
Google Map Insert View this projects location
Content contributor(s) Caroline Cowley
Relationship to project Mediator, Curator, Organiser
Public engagement

All tower owners and the community of Skerries kindly mediated and looked after the tower for its seven week run.