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Kerry sights feature in 'bible of Irish art'.

KERRY architecture and art feature prominently in a new series of books which will chronicle the most beautiful pieces of visual art and architecture across the nation.

The Royal Irish Academy's 'Art and Architecture of Ireland' is a five volume collection that celebrates the architectural and artistic creation of people across the country. The collection includes volumes covering medieval art, painting, sculpture, architecture and twentieth century art.

The medieval wonders of the county are wide and varied with the monastic sites of Skellig Michael and Reasc getting a mention as well as artistic wonders such as the golden Lislaughtin cross discovered in north Kerry.

South Kerry receives much acclaim for its beautiful architecture which ranges from the Roughty Bridge in Kenmare to the Glenbeigh Towers while North Kerry also gets the opportunity to show off the unique Corpus Christi Church in Knockanure as well as the Carraig Church in Ballyferriter, designed by the same architect who would later go on the mastermind the mortuary chapel in Glasnevin cemetery.

The county's most prominent contribution to the series is in the fifth volume which mentions some of the filmmakers, native and otherwise, who delighted in filming the beautiful Kerry landscape in the early days of the century, including Tom Cooper who directed 1938's 'The Dawn' and Canadian filmmaker Sidney Olcott's silent film 'For Ireland's Sake' made in 1914, which captures the lakes of Killarney and the Gap of Dunloe in all their glory.

Valentia born painter and Oireachtas Painting award winner Charles Harper is recognised as well as the acclaimed writers that emerged from the Blasket islands including Micheál Ó'Gaoithin.

The series of books was launched on Sunday, November 16 by the Taoiseach, who referred to the collection, to be available in libraries across the country, as "the bible of Irish art".

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