Christy Brown’s Works and Belongings to Remain in Ireland

Christy Brown

An archive of Christy Brown’s works and belongings is to remain in Ireland, having been purchased jointly by the National Library of Ireland and the Little Museum of Dublin.

The collection, which includes personal effects, paintings and letters went for €44,782 in Bonhams auction house in London this month.

Born in Dublin in 1932, Christy Brown (pictured) had cerebral palsy and become one of Ireland’s most acclaimed artists. His condition left him restricted to using only his left foot to create his works.

Brown’s autobiography My Left Foot, which was published in 1954, was made into a massively successful film in 1989. Daniel Day-Lewis won the Best Actor award at the Academy Awards and the BAFTAs for his portrayal of Brown in the film.

Brown received almost no formal schooling during his youth, but he did attend St Brendan’s School in Sandymount intermittently.

The collection includes books owned by Brown, many of which are signed, such as the dictionary he used. It also contains correspondences between Brown and Katriona Delahunt, the social worker who first nurtured Brown’s talents.

The Lord Mayor of Dublin, Oisín Quinn is happy to have the collection on display in Brown’s home city, “Christy Brown was one of the most remarkable Dubliners of the 20th century, and this collection is a valuable record of his life. It’s great that this archival collection, a wonderful piece of our cultural and literary heritage, will be on public view for the people of Dublin and visitors to this great city.”

By Aimée MacLeod