Paula Kearney | A Sense Of The Place

Opening Reception: Friday 29th April, 7 – 9pm

Paula Kearney studied Fine Art Painting in the College of Marketing and Design (DIT) and at the National College of Art and Design (NCAD) in Dublin. She graduated in the late 80’s and soon after moved to Singapore where she lectured in Life Drawing and Painting. In early 2000 she moved to Dubai where she continued to teach. Whilst living in Dubai she returned to painting full time and took part in several exhibitions and group shows. Her work hangs in private and corporate settings there. Since returning to Ireland she has focused primarily on her painting, gradually shifting her focus from Figurative Images to exploring the Landscape. Paula now lives in county Wicklow where the naturally rugged landscape is central to her work.

A Sense of The Place

Paula Kearney brings a new series of paintings to the Signal Art Centre in Bray (25th April to 8th May 2022). This collection of work explores the landscape of the Murrough in Co. Wicklow where she lives and walks each day. The land there is a nature reserve and is full of migratory birds. It comprises of marsh lands and salt water lakes which stretch along the coast line for 15kms from Kilcoole to Wicklow town. The land is rough and soggy. Bitter and cold in the winter, while warm and wild and open in the summer.

If Paula stands alone here the full weight of the beauty of the isolation and the broody solitude of the landscape engulfs her. A sense of calm prevails while standing feeling tiny in the vastness of the view. Land meets sea, land meets sky. It is rugged, harsh and wet. There is a heavy silence here which is only broken by the wind or the shrill cry of the Little Egrets. The paintings Paula chose for this exhibition are ones which she considered convey the mood that this place leaves her with. They are dark and brooding but always have a hint of light breaking through. The backgrounds are abstract and vast while the foregrounds are more immediate and real, with the dominant entangled grasses and the tall wild foliage.

The paintings marry the two mediums of oil paint and graphite. The brush allows Paula the freedom to make lush moody painterly landscapes while the graphite drawings in the forefront’s allows her to make sharp, bold, complex and realistic lines. Mood and memory are central to her imagery and overall composition. The paintings are about weight, Isolation and silence. The imagery is calm, beautiful but harsh. The land is flooded, waterlogged, root filled and soggy. The paintings bear this weight even when light appears through the heavy overcast skies. All of these paintings strive to capture a sense of this place for the artist and the viewer.

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25 Apr 2022 - 08 May 2022


10:00 am - 5:00 pm

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Signal Arts Centre
1a Albert Ave, Bray, Co. Wicklow


Signal Arts Centre
01 276 2039
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