„Smalltalk in Portumna“

Smalltalk in Portumna
37/50 cm, 2011

Für eine Ausstellung zum Thema „Fahrrad“ steuerte ich dieses Bild bei. Den Mail-Austausch hatte ich für den Katalog vorgesehen, aber er war leider zu lang und zu kryptisch. Dafür kann ich den rätselhaften Text jetzt hier präsentieren.

Richard ist Inhaber eines Fahrradgeschäfts in Düsseldorf.

Meine vorerst letzte Radtour endete in einem Brennessel-Strauch am Baldeneysee, ich gehe definitiv lieber wandern.

„Is it about a bicycle?“

Dear Richard!

Whoever takes part in an art exhibition about bicycles should have read „The Third Policeman“. Weird, crazy, incredibly funny – and about bikes. Well, Mr O’Nolan aka Flann O’Brien is one of my favourite writers anyway, maybe we’ll find a way to raise a glass of the black stuff in his favourite pub in Dublin sometimes (the „Palace Bar“ is a lovely place).

My contribution will be this small scene from a casual encounter of my buddy Noel from the Midlands (on the left, grown up in Dublin, horrible dialect therefore) with Seamus, an inhabitant of Portumna. It was the beginning of a very remarkable pub crawl, to be honest – even the Garda was involved…

See ya!

Hi Peter,,,,,Nice there a long story behind it,,,,not remarkable the Garda had a part to play in the the story they were very likley drinking in the pub also,,,,,after closing time its understood Cheers Rich


Retrieval of the Garda’s honour: The policemen didn’t drink, but they helped us to find the way back to the harbour (where not only our boat waited for us but also Bushmills… nightcap…). After closing time of the pub Andy and I had a nice but slightly embittered conversation with a heavily drunk but well-talented singer („The Crack was Ninety…“, and stuff like that): „Oh, you German tourists come here and have fun, but you have no idea of our hard life in Ireland“. After we told him of our visit of the Great Famine Museum in Strokestown and swaggered about our knowledge concerning the Easter Rising he calmed down immediately 😉

Hi Noel!

This is my rough draft for the upcoming exhibition about „bicycle“ at Peter Tedden’s gallery in Duesseldorf. I hope you feel ok being mentioned… you should meet Ritchard when you come to Bonn again, he’s a Scotsman with Irish roots. Fun to come, Sláinte!

Thanks Peter…. I look forward to meeting him. The Irish & Scots are one and the same you know. I recall that interesting conversation very well with Seamus (that’s him with the Bike) a gent I might add.



Ps. You‘re one to talk about dialects…


Seamus is a beautiful name, I’ll add it to the text! Unfortunately recordings of my German accent do exist so that I must admit that your final remark is damn right…


Ah yes! Seamus and Nollaig sounds good.. A first encounter, a chance meeting… Both strangers at first, now colleagues, and of the one mind.. Maybe two philosophers? „Chewing the Cud“ (old Irish expression… Cows chew the cud)… But what the hell were they saying and talking about.

For that you may only guess at this point, was it the state of the economy?… Maybe… Where can one get the best pint of the black stuff around here? Who are those Germans you are with… The Troika maybe? Was it local banter… Was it global events, what problems are they solving, is that problem too big for most people to care about…should one dare to know and fully understand?

Could it be a solution to change the world we live in?

To try solve this dilemma … Here’s a clue, a hint even… Check the timeline and the events with the newspapers when this moment in time was first captured. But yet, even then, you can still only guess as to the nature of this conversation.

For the moment, it is a well kept secret and can only be revealed as to the force and depth of this encounter to the highest bidder of this painting that you have presented to me. Which indeed will give an insight to the Irish mind and its workings… A mystery to some would you agree ?

A compelling story ….

Nollaig O Cinneachain


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