Saint Patrick's parade

Since 2003 Artastic have created a pageant spectacle for St Patricks festival parade in Dublin, using a variety of community groups along with our talented artists. This blog will describe in brief of a spectacle along with credits to those involved from the years 2003 to 2007.

This is now stepping back a few years but lost a lot of the record of our work. This is a attempt to preserve what we remember of the early years. Hopefully we may be able to add to this information as time goes along.

Aside from the theme of the spectacle each parade brings its own personal story from us as artist but more importantly the stories of the individuals attending. Many participants who got involved with the parades, came back year after year, and in turn some also became the artists who helped create our parades of the future. There are many hardships associated with creating these productions but one thing that made it so worth it was meeting so many wonderful people over the years


2007 Midas Touch – Saint Patrick’s parade

This was a pageant created for Saint Patrick’s parade. The work was based on the story of Midas who wished that everything he touched turned to gold, which was great until he touch his beloved daughter who also turned to gold. Them moral of the story is often told as ‘be careful what you wish for’ while another moral is , ‘to fulfill all of someones dreams is to drive them mad’.

We based the visual idea on some of histories first know  parades parades, which were military parades showing strenght in numbers. The parades were huge displays were often captains told of the victories through dance and theater.

This was Artastic’s biggest parade in Saint Patrick’s parade ever with over 260 participants. The pageant actually cover the entirety of O O’Connell street as we passed through it.  We had schools from Dublin and all over kildare involved.

One of the artists who currently work with us Eugenia, was in the parade as a transition student from Leixlip, and joined the parade a few year later when she was a student in Iadt. She was been in every parade since, as well as working with artastic projects through out the years.


2006 Elemental thought – Saint Patrick’s parade

I remember least about the theme or story but it was based on a Celtic Ireland and the four elements. By 2007 we were noticing a repeated request from participants from previous Saint Patrick’s parades in Dublin.  A strong bond start to form with the participants and this is when I think that it was more than just I start to really identify with been part of Artastic.

I had just lost my studio and this entire parade was created inside a sitting room.


2005 Chaos in Calcutta – Saint Patrick’s parade

This was Artastic’s third entry in Saint Patrick’s parade in Dublin. It was another comic version of a story from when Vijaya was in India. In Calcutta he noticed they stopped cars to protect cows who had decided to stop and have a rest in Calcutta city centre. The pageant was based on the tree colours of traffic lights as there were no traffic lights in Calcutta.



2004 Knicker Bocker Glory – Saint Patrick’s parade 

This was our second parade and at least this year we had managed to get some music into the performance. The story as in many years to come, was a comic story based on monsters who like to disco, but had a keen taste for ice-cream and sweets.  The visual idea was to try build everything on the three shapes, square, triangle and circle.

Artists involved with this were

Vijaya Bateson,  Denis O Connor,  Valerie Kelly.



2003 Journey to the bottom of the garden  – Saint Patrick’s parade

This was our first year to create a pageant for Saint Patrick’s parade in Dublin. If was a steep learning curve but lots of fun. I was hard to believe that only after two years of creating local parades in Newbridge Co Kildare we were not creating work for Saint Patrick’s parade in Dublin. The parade route went from St Stephen’s Green to Western way in the early days.

The story in the pageant was based on being conscious  of the damage that was created to the environment by not recycling. The story told of creatures who’s natural habitat was been destroyed. We tried to create some of the creature by recycling materials such as milk bottles.

Artists involved with this were

Vijaya Bateson,  Denis O Connor,  Valerie Kelly.

We do not have many images of this event, but have whatever is left can be seen below.