Stunning new exhibition which brings to life Kilkenny skeltons’ officially opens today
By COLIN BARTLEY
THE EXHIBITION featuring the bodies of three people discovered during the excavation of Kilkenny’s Medieval Mile Museum three years ago will open to the public today.
3 lives, 3 deaths, One life unlived tells the story of three women, the lives they led, their cultural identity, and whether they viewed themselves as Irish, Anglo-Irish, or Norman.
When 22 skeletal remains were discovered three summers ago during excavations at Kilkenny’s Medieval Mile Museum, it piqued the public’s interest.
Following a €90,000 investment by Fáilte Ireland, the remains of the three females, concealed for centuries, will be central to a fascinating permanent exhibition in the Kilkenny Museum.
Minister of State for Local Government and Electoral Reform, John Paul Phelan TD will officially open the exhibition.
The Minister will be joined by Fáilte Ireland’s Jenny De Saulles and the Cartoon Saloon’s Nora Twomey, who will speak at the event.
Head of Ireland’s Ancient East at Fáilte Ireland, Jenny De Saulles, said: “When overseas visitors come to Ireland, they not only want to visit these great attractions – they want to hear first-hand the stories about Ireland at that time and the people who lived and worked in the area. The 3 lives, 3 deaths, one life unlived exhibition offers just that – it brings to life Kilkenny’s past in a way that is compelling and emotive.”
Nine separate pieces of the adolescent skull were digitally scanned at Liverpool’s John Moores University to create a digital portrait of what the 12-year-old looked like.
The skeletal remains of the two women and one child have been reinterred in a unique burial structure at the Medieval Mile Museum.
Scientific analysis has revealed some details about the lives of the three. One was a 45-year-old woman, the second remains are those of a young woman between the age of 17 and 19, while the third body is that of the child aged 12.
The project received financial support from Fáilte Ireland and Kilkenny County Council, and the exhibition was created in partnership with the design team behind the world-renowned Belfast Titanic project and 1916 centenary exhibition – Tandem designs.