Church of the Annunciation

Church of the Annunciation in Finglas West is one of the biggest churches in Dublin. It was designed by David Keane (David Keane & Partners, later KMD Architecture) in 1967. A massive building with a capacity of 3500 people (!). Large scale structure with impressive concrete roof. Stephen Walsh designed beautiful, abstract stained glass windows including a huge window above the main entrance.

I was thinking about photographing it for quite a long time, and It happened around two weeks ago at last. One day in the morning, I packed cameras, films and a tripod. Then I loaded all on the bicycle as usual and headed towards Finglas. 

I was late, unfortunately (obviously). The building is facing demolition announced in 2017, 50 years after its opening. It is due to structural problems, too expensive to fix and also a decreased number of people attending masses. A smaller church (with capacity up to 350 people) and parish centre will replace it. 

I can only imagine how amazing the entire internal space is, especially stained glass windows which are hard to appreciate from the outside. I knew I would not be able to see everything at this stage. Still wanted to photograph at least elevations especially if weather was so good for a while. I went there once again a few days later, this time in the afternoon. I was looking for a better illumination of previously overshadowed parts of the building. The weather was glorious. 

Above information, it’s all I could find online and in books I have at home. I know it’s not much so if anyone has a reliable source where I can find more details about this building, please share it. Let’s focus now on photographs. 

Here is the link to a few pictures from RTE archive - please click HERE. I also have another link to photographs made by Paul Tierney for Architectural Archive. Please click HERE

Below are the ones I made over the last two visits. 

Church of the Annunciation in Finglas is the fourth church I am photographing. Third in Ireland. These are fascinating buildings with unique details and approach in the design itself.

Please have a look at photographs. Links below:

1. St Johannes XXIII catholic church, Cologne, Germany

2. Saint Fintan’s Church in Sutton, Dublin, Ireland

3. Our Lady Queen of Heaven Church at the Airport, Dublin, Ireland

Technical info: 

Most photographs were made with Rolleiflex T camera loaded with Ilford Delta 400 Pro film and later with Ilford Ortho 80, with filters yellow or red (depends on sunlight). Ilford Ortho 80 proved once again, its incredible quality - resolution and fantastic dynamic range. You can read my first impression of this film HERE

The last presented above (and previously on social media) image was exposed on 4x5 direct positive paper (Harman/Ilford) in a large format pinhole camera with perspective correction. 

Thank you! 

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