This was SO AWESOME! PaperDolls gals, Me, Karen and Elaine had an amazing day today, appearing as 'The Marie Antoinettes' as part of the Spectacle of Defiance and Hope protests which took place in Dublin city today:
The Spectacle of Defiance and Hope is a broadly based alliance of Community Organisations from Dublin and beyond. In 2010 a large number of groups came together to protest and challenge the programme of cuts that were imposed on the youth and community sector and draw attention to the savage economic injustices that were taking place in Ireland. The Spectacle is for an Ireland of true equality in the conditions of people's lives.
The event was so fun, so creative, so engaging, we had so much fun. We hung out in Queen of Tarts, appropriately, taking over the place with costume and make up and talcum powder and wigs and cups of tea, before heading down to the nightclub of Arlington Hotel to put the finishing touches on our costumes. Then we made our grand appearance on the streets of Dublin to a litter of photos, photo requests and delighted stares. The music was already pouring from the floats as we prepared ourselves on Bui Bolg's Giant Scales of Injustice. I bagsied the high scale, while Karen took position opposite me and Elaine held the bow as a sinister Marie, cursing the poor and peasants who we demanded move out of our way and go have a bath cause they smelled appalling! Two great clowns John and Marie did a brilliant job of being the French pre-revolution peasantry, begging us for bits of food. We had lots of brioche and cake to tease them with and throw at the crowds, crying "Disgusting, horrible, awful, horrendous" and stuffing our faces (except for Karen who is vegan!). The kids really did not like us at all, getting all frustrated with our arrogant characters - I had moments of empathy for Marie as some people in the crowd drew fingers across their throats and made mock gestures of guillotine blades dropping.
Let them eat cake...
Let them eat cake...
The first motion of the float leaving Castle Street was exhilarating - the plate swung as the float turned and made it's steady way onto Dame Street, the first punk notes of the Dead Kennedy's spilling from the speakers as I roared, face askew: "KILL THE POOR!"
On the other side, children were taking to poking Karen with sticks, but she efficiently batted them away with her lace fan. Some anonymous aggressors threw unfriendly things at us; one woman got a half-full bottle of pop hard in her face as she crossed Elaine's path. One man shouted at me: "You bitch!" Kind of racy eh? I flicked him some cake.
The best bit was swinging along the top level of double-decker buses and making eyes at the passengers. Millions of camera phones, camera eyes, cameras on sticks, sound recording devices and boom mics were thrust in our direction; more cake, more shouting, more grimacing. The camera people point into their lens repetitively, eyes going straight to screen before lifting again to shoot. Karen said one man followed her the whole way, dedicating an entire memory card of her photographic data alone, "A whole card!" He exclaimed at her, amused. We are bloody beautiful though.
More amazing here.
Photos by Leon Farrel.