More than concrete blocks, vol. I

Dublin City's twentieth-century buildings and their stories: 1900–1940

Ellen Rowley, editor

Paperback €22.45
Catalogue Price: €24.95
ISBN: 978-1-902703-44-2
June 2016. 368pp; full colour, large format.

‘This book includes much original research, meticulous documented, and it is the bringing together of these key works in their architectural, political and social context that makes such illuminating reading … Roll on the next two volumes’, Karen Latimer, Perspective (Sept/Oct 2016).

‘[An] excellent book … Rowley and her team of contributors have looked at a remarkable diverse range of buildings. Needless to say, this is a particularly beautiful production, stylishly and lavishly illustrated with both archival material and a heroic quantity of photographs. It is also intended to be accessible; it is written clearly and concisely with a consistent authorial/editorial voice, and with a good eye for engaging details, and a very useful apparatus of maps and individual bibliographies for each case-study … This book reveals another city hidden in plain sight. Rowley and her contributors can congratulate themselves on a job done exceptionally well. This is a notable contribution to Dublin’s history, and, as such, should be an essential reference point for anyone interested in it. This is a wonderful first installment of a most worthwhile project’, John Gibney, Books Ireland (Nov/Dec 2016).

‘[An] ambitious and very significant publication … an intriguing journey that traces the context, conception, birth and life stories of 98 building projects, planned between 1900 and 1939 … Scholarship combined with accessible language offer the general or specialist reader insights into the fusion of social, political, cultural, technological and ideological forces manifest in Dublin’s architecture, made in a period of radical change, in Ireland, and globally. Case studies are embellished by a rich and rare array of photographs and drawings … Goethe defined music as “liquid architecture” and architecture as “frozen music”. This book takes Dublin’s architecture out of the freezer. Read it. It is well worth it’, Seán Ó Laoire, Irish Arts Review (Autumn 2016).

'This book represents a real breakthrough in the study of Irish contemporary architecture … the essays, case studies and gazetteer describe Dublin buildings in a hugely interesting way – many for the first time … this book pushes the boundaries of public funding to disseminate real information and to produce seriously-researched but accessible works which will benefit experts and casual reader alike', Niall McCullough, McCullough Mulvin Architects (May 2016).

‘The handsomely illustrated book presents an overview, in guidebook style, of about 90 sites in a survey of the city’s buildings in the first four decades of the 20th century’, Hugh Linehan, Irish Times (May 2016).

‘This is a book densely packed with information. Architects will know and value it already; the rest of us should acquire it and contemplate with pleasure the buildings it describes’, Mary Davies, History Ireland (Nov/Dec 2016).


‘Consider the tumultuous, transformative time period (1900–1940) that included World War I, the Great Depression, Ireland’s struggles for independence, and the beginnings of World War II. The essays and case studies in this volume skillfully employ that era’s architecture to deliver Dublin’ story through its buildings … The old saying ‘A picture is worth a thousand words’ cannot begin to describe the beautiful photographs, maps and illustrations (many in colour) that grace so many pages in this splendid book … Readers will eagerly look forward to upcoming volumes in this intriguing series, knowing what a thrill it would be to plan a Dublin trip around the historic site and compelling events covered in this book!’ Mary McWay Seaman, The Celtic Connection