‘Dearcan na nDaoine – the People’s Acorn’ was created by Irish artist Rachel Joynt and will take its place in the grounds of Áras an Uachtaráin, as part of the State 1916 centenary commemorations.
The ceremony will be attended by 170 children from 7 schools, who contributed their thoughts and wishes for Ireland’s future, as well as older people, from Lourdes Day Care Centre and the Bealtaine writers group in Malahide, who wrote their thoughts and memories for inclusion in the time capsule.
Also in attendance will be a number of relatives from people who died in the Easter Rising, artists and members of the jury who selected the winning design, following the call, in late 2015, by President Michael D. Higgins and Sabina Higgins for a suitable 1916 commemorative piece.
In late 2015, President Michael D. Higgins and Sabina Higgins invited a number of renowned artists working in Ireland and abroad to propose a suitable 1916 commemorative piece for installation in the grounds of Áras an Uachtaráin, as an appropriate and permanent tribute to the men and women whose effort and sacrifice contributed so much to Irish freedom and which would also serve as an inspiration towards realising such a promise of building a true republic, as outlined in the 1916 proclamation.
The project is being funded as part of the Government’s Ireland 2016 Commemorations Programme, which has provided a budget of €160,000.
The President invited a Jury, chaired by Catríona Crowe, to choose suitable artists to be invited to make proposals and also to undertake the difficult task of choosing a design to proceed to realisation. The other Jury members were Imogen Stuart, Robert Ballagh, Seán Ó Laoire, and Jenny Haughton.
Fourteen Artists responded to the President’s initial invitation and between them provided a broad range of proposals. Of these, the Jury selected five, who were invited to make more detailed proposals including maquettes (models) of their designs, and they were required to make a presentation of their proposals to the Jury.
At the completion of this process, the winning design chosen by the Jury was Rachel Joynt’s ‘Dearcán na nDaoine / People’s Acorn’.
Rachel is currently undertaking the fabrication of her piece, which is scheduled to be unveiled in November 2017.