Tuesday, January 6, 2015
Just the other day I happened to pass through Dublin's Italian quarter. I hadn't been there for a good while, and I thought I'd have another look at John Byrne's "Last Supper" mural which I had last seen on the ground in 2008.
I fully expected it to be obliterated by graffiti and was amazed to see it looking as good as new. So I investigated closer up. It is actually protected by a number of thick glass plates and I'm assuming that such graffiti as might have appeared were easily washed away.
There remained some subtle signs of interference, however. Starting with Jesus.
It appeared that someone had recently been trying to put words in his mouth. Or were the remaining bits of paper just from an ad for a cheap latte across the road?
More seriously, he had been shot in the upper arm. The glass looked really resilient, like that at the British Embassy in 1972, but it had been almost penetrated. As far as Jesus was concerned, the bullet would have passed through leaving just a flesh wound.
The apostle John, here modeled by a woman, was not so lucky. A straight shot to the heart.
And a final coup de grace, Judas, the banker, shot in the head.
And for any doubting Thomas out there, these were no mere scratches.
I put my finger in the holes.