Night Sky over the Sugar Loaf ©John O’Grady

10″ x 10″ oil on panel, requires framing


The Sugar Loaf mountain is a landmark as you head south from Co Dublin into Co Wicklow. Although not great in height, once climbed it commands fabulous views across land and the Irish sea.

I have never climbed it at night but can imagine the open night sky away from light pollution.

This painting came to me during the week after seeing some photographs of swirling forms that had been cut into rocks close to the Sugar Loaf such as ones seen on Tibradden hill.


Source: Joe King

What lies behind these markings is still debated though many theories refer to a night sky.

When looking at these, I too see stars and the swirling life force emanating from the centre.

Thousands of years ago, on clear nights, local people must have climbed the Sugar Loaf to marvel and possibly make sense of their world.

These patterns also brought to mind one of Van Gogh’s most famous paintings, ‘Starry Night’.


I believe Van Gogh felt the same awe, the same energy for these swirling forms as those ancestors. I have.

This painting evokes that sense of wonderment felt across time and place when stargazing.

Do you feel it too?