John Minihan on photographing Beckett, Bacon and The Last Wake in Athy. The legendary photographer in conversation with poet Dermot Bolger.
John Minihan’s world famous photograph of having coffee with Beckett in a Paris cafe has become one of the iconic images of the twentieth century. In a rare public interview with Dermot Bolger, Minihan, one of Ireland’s most distinguished living photographers – who is especially noted for his portraits of writers – discusses his friendship with Beckett, which started when he showed the writer his famous photographs of the last ever wake to be held in his native Athy.
John Banville has written that, “Looking at the work of John Minihan one understands immediately why Samuel Beckett, that most private and publicity-shy of artists, entirely trusted him, and allowed him to become, in effect, his official photographer”. With a fascinating slideshow of Minihan’s photographs, ranging from intimate images of friends like Beckett and Francis Bacon, to the famous first press photograph of Diana Spencer at nineteen working in a pre-school nursery in London, this conversation between Minihan and Bolger is a must for lovers of literature and of photography.
Playwright, novelist and poet, Dermot Bolger is one of Ireland’s best known writers and he has taken part in every Phizzfest Festival. This autumn sees the publication of a new novel, The Fall of Ireland, and a new poem sequence, The Venice Suite.