ArticleThe Art Of Squeezing
To squeeze about 300,000 years of Dublin's history into exactly 29 minutes, one has to be a little bit cheeky - to start the presentation with “Fortunately, nothing much happened in Dublin for the first 299,000 years. It was just cold and gloomy there” - and quite creative. Creativity is needed to identify the key developments of the remaining millennium and to rearrange them so as to form a coherent, free-flowing story presented with energy, and laced with humour. “… By 1988 the economy was down, the crime rate and unemployment soared, drugs became quite popular - obviously, Dublin desperately needed some reason to celebrate. As Cork had just marked its 800th anniversary, Dublin City Council decided to follow suit. It was lucky that nobody knew when exactly the city had actually been founded, so why not presume it happened in 988?! The plan worked like a charm - the celebrations were wild, and the city as a whole significantly cheered up…”
Packed with fun facts and shrewd observations, the 29-minutes long artistic presentation is just one (even if the main one) course of the menu offered by the Little Museum of Dublin, whose very name implies that it must have perfected the Fine Art of Squeezing necessary to exhibit a variety of objects in but little space. Indeed, only a few museum rooms suffice to touch on an array of city-related topics, such as architecture, transportation, mass-media, animal life - let alone a whole room devoted to a Dublin phenomenon collectively known as U-2 (the “U 2, Made in Dublin” exhibition). The following pictures help to understand how one poster can tell the story of buses in Dublin
or how a snapshot can emphasize what it takes to run a successful newspaper business.
While good stories are consistent, great ones often have a reversal - and so does the story of the Little Museum located next to a big public park known in Dublin as Stephen Green. The Museum, that master-squeezer, must have been particularly delighted to temporarily reverse its course by creating a tour called “The Big Little Treasure Hunt”. The tour is essentially a game happening in and around the park, and it epitomizes the Museum's unofficial motto “Learning Through Fun”.