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Oscar Wilde Statue

Take a picture of yourself lying next to this quirky statue of one of Ireland’s literary legends, who is depicted reclining on a rock.

The colorful and eye-catching Oscar Wilde Statue is a familiar sight to Dubliners, who count it among the many of the city’s distinctive and iconic sculptures. Pay homage to one of Ireland’s greatest writers by snapping a photo of yourself with the literary prodigy.

The statue was commissioned by Irish drinks giant Guinness in 1997 and was created by Irish sculptor Danny Osborne. As with many of Dublin’s statues, this one has earned itself an irreverent and somewhat politically incorrect nickname, with locals referring to it as “the Queer with the Leer.”

Take a closer look at the sculpture, which shows Wilde casually lounging on a rock, with one knee raised. Note the use of stone of varying colors and textures: Wilde’s jacket is carved from green nephrite jade and pink Norwegian thulite, his trousers from glittering Norwegian larvikite, his shoes from shiny black granite, while the boulder Wilde sits upon is made from white quartz.

Be sure to view the monument from both angles to fully appreciate the nuances of the sculptor’s work. Wilde’s face is of particular note, bearing a two-sided expression, with one side seemingly smiling and happy and the other side displaying sadness.

Find two stone pillars near the statue, which are inscribed with some of Wilde’s famous quotes. The quotes showcase his insights and opinions on art and life and include such famous witticisms as “a cynic is a man who knows the price of everything and the value of nothing.” Above the columns are two small bronzes: the first is of Wilde’s pregnant wife, Constance, while the second is of a male torso representing Dionysus, the god of wine, theater and fertility.

Find the Oscar Wilde Statue in the northwest corner of Merrion Square, a park in central Dublin. The park is open daily, between early morning and early evening. Nearby is the Oscar Wilde House, the former childhood home of the famous Dublin writer. The Georgian house now serves as a cultural center.


Guide to Exploring Oscar Wilde Statue


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