The Silent Art

Documentary, Entertainment, Irish Culture
Directed by:
Louis Marcus
Produced by:
Louis Marcus


14 mins

This documentary, marking the directorial debut of Academy-Award nominated filmmaker Louis Marcus, is a luminous portrait of renowned Cork sculptor, Seamus Murphy (RHA).

This first film-making endeavour by Louis Marcus serves as an invaluable record of his friend, sculptor Seamus Murphy (affectionately known as Stone Mad), and his work in his studio in Blackpool, Cork, and on the streets of the city. Although it was made on a shoestring and a borrowed 16mm bolex camera, Silent Art is a luminous tribute to the work of the great sculptor. Against the ringing of the Shandon bells, several of Murphy’s pieces are shown in situ in UCC, in Ballyvourney and in Cork city, and the sculptor himself is seen at work sculpting a bust of his daughter Orlagh.

Marcus remembers The Silent Art was shown in 1959 at the same Cork Film Festival where Mise Éire (on which he had worked as an editorial assistant) was premiered: ‘With Dónal Ó Móráin and Bob Mac Góráin of Gael-Linn in Cork for that event, I showed them my film. Soon after, I got my first commission from Gael-Linn and continued to make documentaries for them until 1973.’

With kind permission of Louis Marcus.