Signal Arts Centre

30 Years of Making

Monday 29th March to Sunday April 24th

Signal Arts Centre is celebrating over 30 years in existence with an exhibition in both Signal and Mermaid Arts Centres. The exhibition, entitled “Signal Arts Centre – 30 Years of Making” will open on Monday 29th March and will run until 24th April. Although the work will be hung in both galleries, the exhibition will be made available to view online due to the current restrictions.

First opened in June 1990 by a group of recently graduated artists, Signal is now entering its 31st year.  It was set up to provide an opportunity for other emerging artists to exhibit their work and to be a place of welcome and production for the many communities of Bray and North Wicklow. Their aim was to establish an artist run centre that would be a permanent part of the arts and local infrastructure. 

Since then, Signal has gone on to provide over 600 artists with a chance to exhibit their first solo show, to work with a number of resource centres, schools and communities of interest; to buy its own building and to run a community employment programme specifically for those wishing to develop a career in the arts. It’s been some journey and it has been a privilege seeing many of those young artists become nationally recognised. 

The exhibition will show works by 30 artists selected from the 600 artists who have previously exhibited in Signal. 

Eleanor Phillips, Director of Signal Arts Centre, said: “In 2021 the Board of Signal is taking time to reflect on work done, plan for the future and develop the centre in order to provide better facilities and opportunities for artists and art makers/lovers.
Part of that reflection is celebrating the work done and to do so with friends and fellow arts professionals. We are delighted to be honouring these achievements with the fantastic support of Mermaid Arts Centre in this group show”.

Speaking about the exhibition, Julie Kelleher, Director of Mermaid Arts Centre, said: “Mermaid and Signal Arts Centres have had a long and fruitful association. Mermaid is so pleased to partner with Signal to mark this very special anniversary and celebrate the achievements of the artists involved, and of Signal itself over the last three decades. In a time when there is enormous uncertainty for artists and the organisations that support them, it is a joyful and hopeful thing to be able to present this work, albeit online by necessity, as a reminder of the enduring positivity that art can bring to the lives of so many. We look forward to welcoming visitors through our virtual doors to enjoy this wonderful exhibition.”

Signal Arts Centre is looking forward to building new partnerships and refreshing old ones on their journey through the next 30 years and seeing their big dream: a purpose built visual arts centre, come to fruition. 

Exhibiting Artists at Signal Arts Centre

Emer O'Boyle -

In 2006 Signal Arts Centre gave me my first break as an artist. I was just out of College. While I was mulling over what work I would submit to this exhibition, my daughter Orla was building her website, to showcase her work exploring the body, eroticism, gender and lesbianism from her perspective as a black and queer artist. I thought it would be fitting to pass on the act of confidence Signal Arts Centre showed in me, to Orla AKA Keni. I’m proud to introduce her here by naming my own version of the ubiquitous and inadequate thumbs up emoji,

Thank you Eleanor Philips and Signal Arts Centre.

Emer O Boyle is an artist based in the College of Science at University College Dublin. She is co-founder and Director of UCD Parity Studios, the university wide artists in residence programme. Her pedagogical and curatorial work aim to bridge traditional disciplinary boundaries through creating cross disciplinary platforms. Her studio practice involves using the visual language of institutions, through drawing, painting and sculpture to speak back to them.

Her work has been commissioned by Amnesty Voice Our Concern, CREATE Dublin Fringe Festival and Firestation Studios, EU FP7 project GLORIA – Global Robotic Telescope Intelligent Array, EU PEACE II programme, National Council for Curriculum and Assessment, Tyndall National Institute, UCD School of Physics and UCD College of Science.

Pencil on Paper 35cm X 27cm €350

Miriam Sweeney - Subversion

Subversion stems from a practice that is underpinned with the exploration and longing for otherness: the mediation of an apparent reality and illusion. It was driven by the need to articulate a journey form one level of reality to another – the unknown. A dark horse, a leap of faith………

Other than a recent two-year spell in Valentia Island Co Kerry, Sweeney has spent most of her adult life in Dun Laoghaire. Prior to that she had a nomadic childhood that included living in, what was then, Persia. Sweeney is a graduate of  IADT – in 1991 she graduated with a Diploma in Fine Art and in 2007 with a BA (Hons) Visual Art Practice. Sweeney was a key organiser for Anaesthetic Intervention (2009) – an exhibition in public and vacant spaces in Dun Laoghaire by the now defunct artist collective Sodium. She was also a main organiser for a multi-media ‘postcard’ exhibition 16-6-09 held in Copenhagen. For the collaborative exhibition – Interaction (2011) Sweeney along with Sandra Schoene received a Highly Commended for their project What’s the Story. In 2008 Sweeney was short- listed for overall winner of DLR Visual Open Submission and in 2011 she won a Saatchi Online Showdown Tournament.  Sweeney’s work is in many private collections throughout Europe and America and the work Subversion I is now part of the Saatchi Gallery Collection. To date Sweeney has had 4 solo shows, two of them at the Signal Arts Centre Bray.

Her work has been commissioned by Amnesty Voice Our Concern, CREATE Dublin Fringe Festival and Firestation Studios, EU FP7 project GLORIA – Global Robotic Telescope Intelligent Array, EU PEACE II programme, National Council for Curriculum and Assessment, Tyndall National Institute, UCD School of Physics and UCD College of Science.

Archival Print 86cm X 63cm €3,000

Anne Curran - Edges of Our Time

“Edge of our Time “ is a series of paintings created in 2020 as a response to

They stand right beside each other, each one rooted in fragility ,made with repeated
acts of burning. The shapes are chosen to represent our world, our state of flux, the
use of puncturing the images to create disappearance, distortion.
I worked with these paintings in a very slow and meditative way, incorporating unconventional mark making to the collaged pieces. My chosen materials are encaustic paint made from beeswax and asian papers.

Cartography and the image of the circle become distorted, and the slowness of the work becomes its soul.

Anne Curran is a visual artist based in Co Wicklow, Ireland. Anne graduated
from The National College of Art and Design with Visual Arts Practice, where
she was awarded The Grand Prize for her installation in her final year of
sculpture in the graduate Exhibition. Her other studies have embraced
sculpture, drawing and most noteworthy Encaustic Painting. Her practice now
is around paper sculpture, painting, contemporary drawing, monotype printing,
and each of her disciplines involves Encaustic.

Anne has exhibited in Solo and Group shows, and her most recent works were
selected to be included in The Royal Ulster Academy of Arts 139th RUA Annual
Exhibition Belfast, 2020-2021 and The Courthouse Gallery, Ennistymon ,Co
Clare Winter Annual Exhibition 2020.

Her work was also selected for The National Botanical Gardens “Sculpture in
Context Exhibition 2020” and The Gallery of Modern Art Waterford Annual
Exhibition 2020.

Anne received a scholarship to attend The International Encaustic Conference
2022 in Provincetown, Massachusetts, USA, and is a recipient of a Jurors
Award for The International Encaustic Artists Organisation, United States,
where her piece was selected and published for an Exhibition in 2020 in the

Another publication of her work inspired by her experience during Lockdown
was included in The autumn issue of Wax Fusion 2020, a digital journal
magazine of International Encaustic Artists, USA.
Anne is a member of The Visual Artists of Ireland, Artists Network
Dunlaoghaire, Co Dublin, and is a member of Artists Connect, Co Wicklow.
Anne is a member of The International Encaustic Artists Organisation,
California, United States along with membership of The Catalyst Art Lab
Community in the US and The European Encaustic Artists Organisation.
Anne is currently involved in a number collaborative projects, here in Ireland
and a transatlantic project with Europe and the United States.

Collaged Encaustic Paintings (Quadriptych) 45cm X 95cm X 2cm €1,200

Gerda Telieur - Sky Below 3

This drawing is part of The Sky Below series, inspired by soil and what happens under the surface. The natural white of the paper comes through like fragile white seeds.

Gerda Teljeur , Born  in the Netherlands, studied art in Amsterdam before relocating to Ireland in 1967.  Butwith the complications with

Solo Exhibitions include: Like Life Itself: Diary Drawings 2010/11, Wexford Arts Centre(2013); Line Layers and Light, Stone Gallery, Dubllin (2010) The Drawing Room, drawing installation, Courthouse Arts Centre Tinahely, Co Wicklow(2004);  Life Lines in Signal Arts Centre, Bray Co.Wicklow (2003) Moodscapes, Mermaid, Co Wicklow Arts Centre, Bray (2003) Surface Tension, an Arts Council funded initiative, Touring Experiment, 3 artist’s work, Raheen Co.Clare, Broadstone Gallery, Dublin, Source Arts centre, Thurles; Group exhibitions include: All about Drawing,Stedelijk Museum Schiedam the Netherlands(2011); Into Irish Drawing, City of Limerick Gallery of Art, AKH, the Netherlands, ICC Paris; MCAC, Northern Ireland(2008-10.

Gerda lives and works in Wexford.

Ink on Paper 57cm X 76cm €3,200

Mary Duffy - And the Sea Don't Pay No Mind

This painting  was created for an exhibition at the National Maritime Museum in Ireland, commemorating the sinking of the RMS Leinster.  In the closing days of the First World War, the ship was sunk off the Kish Lighthouse by a torpedo on October 10 with the loss of 529 lives. One hundred years later, in the summer of 2018, I learnt to sail in the same harbour that The Leinster embarked from on its doomed voyage.  

The hours I spent on the water contemplating the loss of life and the tragedy in the closing days of the war, while learning to negotiate the wind and the waves in the harbour, led me to create this painting

I have been an artist most of my life. Last October I was awarded a Visual Arts Bursary from the Arts Council of Ireland.  I am currently working on a series of paintings tentatively called Samhain, based on the fragility of life and the certainty of death.       

I graduated from the National College of Art and Design in Dublin in 1983 working primarily in performance and photography.    I returned to painting 15 years ago. After ten years of working en plein air, I found myself at a point of transition with paint. Accustomed to the wind in my face and the rain on my palette, circumstances forced me to try to work more from my memory of places, rather than directly on site.  Initially, I was uncomfortable with these ‘remote’ methods and it took time to become more at ease with them as a means of painting.  As I began working indoors and from memory for the first time, my paintings became bigger and more abstract. This shift came from a desire not to just paint places or things, but rather to use the paint itself to express the essence of space and place, and my response to it. Now I am allowing the paint to lead me now as much as the landscape led me in the past.

Cold Wax and Oil on Canvas 2X 80cm X 60cm €4,200

Sarah Iremonger - Submerged Horizons Skellig Michael, Star Wars and Water Camouflages 2017

This work is based on a variety of original and found online images including Skellig Michael, Star Wars and water camouflage, the images have been layered to create a fragmented confusion of abstract shapes, and painted in the style of camouflage.

This work investigates the identity of place, in this case of a spiritual historical site, and how this identity has been co-opted or displaced for mass media and corporate gain. Their style references early 20th century abstract art with a digital twist. By placing the agency of subject matter and personal artistic signature and expression in the background, the visual landscape signifiers become hidden in a forest of post-representational camouflage.

Iremonger’s work uses a multidisciplinary approach of found, created and adapted images, photographs, painting, murals, drawing, badges, cards, digital media, video and neon.  Based in Kinsale, Co. Cork, Ireland, early work was embedded in the romantic and modernist painting traditions, with epic implications. Later and recent work investigates ideas of representation. Later and recent work investigates ideas of representation, by placing the agency of subject matter, personal artistic signature and expression in the background.

Watercolour on Paper 66cm X 49cm €3,500

Orla Callaghan - Salvadore The Pirate Raft

‘The Tale of Frozen Charlotte and Salvadore the Pirate Raft’ (A little storybook.)

Since the 13th century a particular type of sail has been common to the west of Ireland and north Africa. The sail, known as the Dipping Lug in Ireland and the Lateen in Africa demonstrates the legacy of communication and interconnection forged by sea faring. This became a signpost for investigation into boats while 2020 rocked our world’s boat in ‘unprecedented’ ways.

Experimental boat making led to an emergence of narrative when the shard of a china doll, found in a field, somehow became involved and personification occurred. The shard is a Frozen Charlotte, a specific form of china doll made from c. 1850 to c. 1920. Frozen Charlottes got their name from an American poem called ‘Corpse to a Ball’ about a vain young woman. Despite warnings from her mother to dress warmly, Charlotte preferred to show off her beautiful gown and froze to death on the way to the ball. The truncated Frozen Charlotte of this new story carries the eerie shadow of vanity’s folly but her present state, the survivor of countless cycles of ploughing, speaks of resilience and endurance. The boat character, Salvadore the Pirate Raft, grew from a chain of references that began in the floating gardens of Mexico. Salvadore took shape as part pirate vessel, part party boat, and part survival raft, encapsulating some of the disparate energies involved in the struggle to stay afloat.

The writing is lightweight, a counter balance perhaps in these heavy times, when a yearning for fairy tales and sea shanties has seen a resurgence and levity may act as a buoyancy aid.

Orla Callaghan is a Wicklow based artist. A graduate of NCAD, where she studied sculpture, Orla had her first solo show in Signal in 1999. Ranging through various media: darkroom photography, collage, installation and felt making, her work focuses on ecology, evolution, language, cartography and human geography. A consistent engagement with making by hand is essential to her process. 

In her exhibition ‘Chaney’ in 2015, Orla created an installation centred round a collection of pottery shards picked up over years while walking the fields near her home. One of these finds has become the catalyst for her current work which combines the iconography of boats with narratives of our times. Since 2008 Orla has worked in the area of arts and disability with groups and individuals, facilitating artists to develop and exhibit their work.

Orla has exhibited in England and Australia and has work in the collections of the Office of Public Works and the Department of Public Enterprise.

Book 21cm X 15cm €40

Joanne Boyle - Untitled 2020

Joanne Boyle is a visual artist based in Wicklow. She is a graduate of the BA in Visual Arts Practice, 2009. Since then she has been awarded a studio and mentorship award from DLR Arts Office (2009), an Artlinks Bursary from Wicklow Arts Office (2011), a Bursary for publication from Wicklow Arts Office (2012), was a founding member of Outpost Studios, Bray (2014), awarded a residency at The Guesthouse, Cork (2014), received Arts Council Visual Artists Workspace Award (2016), commissioned by Wicklow Arts Office to commemorate the 100th anniversary of womens right to vote (2018).

Recent exhibitions include, solo show in the Mermaid Arts Centre, Bray (2019). Selected group shows include, PeripheriesOPEN Gorey School of Art (2018)(2019), Outpost Studios Group Show, Mermaid Arts Centre (2016), Panorama, Pallas Projects (2015), Summer Show, Taylor Gallery (2014), Annual Exhibition, RHA (2014), Open Submission, Mermaid Arts Centre (2013), Boyle Arts Festival, invited artist (2013), Annual Exhibition, RHA (2012), Boyle Arts Festival, invited artist (2012). 

Oil on Linen 60cm X 60cm €1,450

Lee Welch - Perhaps the Same Bird Echoed Through the Both of Us

In an age dominated by the digital image and mass media, Welch cherishes the physicality of the human touch with work that is a testament to the meaning and potency of painting. When he is looking for material, it’s not so much about the content as to how to handle the material to evoke an emotional response. Our emotions make us human. His paintings wait mutely – patiently – for the viewer to animate them. A dynamic, intimate encounter between painting and observer.

Lee Welch (IRL/USA) completed an MFA at the Piet Zwart Institute, Rotterdam and gained his BFA from the National College of Art and Design, Dublin. He is the NCAD Studio Artist for 2020-21 and was recently awarded a residency at the Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin. Welch’s work has been featured in numerous institutions including Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum, Michigan State University; Dublin City Gallery The Hugh Lane; Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Castilla y León (MUSAC), León, Spain and Objectif Exhibitions, Antwerp. His paintings are in private and public collections such as Dublin City Gallery, The Hugh Lane and the OPW – State Art Collection. Lee Welch is represented by Berlin Opticians Gallery, Dublin. 

Acrylic on Movers Blanket 51cm X 40cm €1,200

Noel Cleary - Old Court

Oil on Canvas 50cm X 38cm N.F.S.

Conall McCabe - Self Portrait

My Work seeks to traverse the divide between the traditional figurative painting and abstraction. I create delicately rendered paintings that explore my interest in the complexity of the human make up.

The lifelong search for purpose and a sense of completeness in oneself are the axiom upon which my artistic exploration hinges. The feeling of incompleteness in us all is represented individually in each intimate portrait. Every Portrait is a map of life and its corrosive effects.  Our emotions, traumas, hopes, memories, a plethora of the human experience, interweave to make a mortal tapestry of finite form, a transient gestalt of being.

I explore the human form in a mosaic of abstract shapes which I refer to as Form/Colour Tessellation. My Artistic process borrows from the Appropriation of filtered digitised edited images. When seen as a whole the subjects are defined or recognisable. On closer inspection the viewer is met with an intricate network of fluid shapes and colours. Each tile or shape is significant in its own right both, an aesthetic in its singularity or part of a harmonious mass.

Watercolour on Arches Hot Pressed Paper 28cm X 20cm €600

Ann Marie Webb - I never did learn that Tiktok Dance

As a painter I am curious of how painting acts through the language of abstraction to create a visual vernacular. I use colour and mark making to work in contradiction between space and object.  My search rests in the place where an image can move between the specific and the nomadic, creating fleeting forms and shifting perspectives.

Ann Marie received her BA VAP from IADT in 2011, and her MFA Painting from NCAD in 2014, she has has won the Peter O’ Kane award, RDS, and was shortlisted for Most Promising Artist ,Talbot Gallery 2011. She has been featured by Saatchi Art Art to Invest In, Shortlisted for Saatchi’s Painted World 2015, L.A United States. Her work was selected for Eigse Open Carlow 2015, Solo shows include Ann Marie Webb Cavenacor Gallery -Lifford, Voyagers-Dun laoughaire Art Gallery- Dun Laoughaire , ‘There is no there there…”Pallas Studios- Dublin, Mapping the Semi-gods-Signal arts centre and Dancing with the Semi-gods-Mermaid Art Centre, Bray. She has shown in many group shows in Ireland and has exhibited frequently in the RHA. Collections held by OPW and in various countries including Ireland, England, Poland, Switzerland, Chicago, Pittsburg. She is a member of collaborative group Raft, part of research group in Kilruddery Bray held by Cliodhna Shaffrey and Eilis Levelle, She is also a founding member of Outpost Studios Bray. Represented by Saatchi Art and Art Pistol Glasgow.

Oil on Canvas 88cm X 107 cm €1,800

Yanny Petters - Hedgerow Silhouettes with Buttercup and Herb-Robert

Yanny Petters paints on glass in a technique known as Verre Eglomisé. 

This piece includes Nature Print, 24 carat gold leaf and white gold and is one of three works representing hedgerow plants.

Yanny raises awareness of Irish wild habitats and draws attention to plants which we all too easily take for granted.

She is represented by the Olivier Cornet Gallery in Dublin.

Gold Leaf and Pigment on Glass 80cm X 40cm €3,850

Piia Rossi - Sound of the Wind

Piia Rossi is an artist and an art pedagogist from Finland. She studied printmaking in Ireland at The National College of Art and Design where she received a degree in Fine Art in 1996 and MLitt. in Education in 2006.  Currently Rossi divides her time between Finland and Slovakia and keeps close contact to Ireland through work and friends. 

Rossi has held solo exhibitions in Finland, Germany and Ireland. In 2009 she held solo exhibition Home Sweet Home in Signal Art Gallery. This was a participatory Installation made of over 100 miniature paper houses arranged on the gallery floor as an imaginary town. A number of these houses had images drawn onto them by the artist, the rest were devoid of any drawing as during the interactive workshops participants projected their own images onto the houses by drawing and painting.
Rossi has exhibited widely internationally as well as in Ireland. Her work is included in many Irish public and private collections including: DCC, OPW, Trinity College Dublin, AIB, Microsoft Ireland and President Mary McAleese’s collection. Rossi has been awarded The Arts Council New Work Grant and in 2018 her work was selected to the and Women voted – Women artists from the AIB Art Collection exhibition held at the dlr Lexlcon.

Rossi mainly works on large scale installations that are formed of numerous small parts. Instead of concentrating on small individual pieces she rather tells stories in arrangements of multiples. The method and material of the installations may vary, however the topic stays constant; belonging, pining and fear of losing. In her work she suggests order into chaos, the aim is to create an experience of harmony and quiet. She hopes to reach this by offering wonderment and awe, by arranging an elevating experience away from the mundane. 

Rossi is currently working towards a solo exhibition Breakable held in Promenadigalleria, Finland. The piece seen in Signal Art Centre is a video piece of this large-scale floor piece that is composed of thousands of broken eggshells. These eggs are dyed using colors which Rossi makes from plants, berries, vegetables and other natures offerings. Sustainability issues in art production is important to Rossi and her aim is to create art that in the end can be taken apart and returned back to nature.
In the video the eggs move freely as air moves around them. When the eggs touch, they make very delicate sounds that are like fleeting memories.

Video N/A N.F.S.

Louise Manifold - Bird Boat 2009

A part sculpture, part taxidermy ornament, made as part of a body of work based on the Fata Morgana, an optical phenomenon or mirage where far-distant objects or shapes can appear to float on the horizon.

Louise Manifold works conceptually with film, photography, sculpture and text. Fascinated by the power of stories and the creation of myth , Manifold’s work explores narratives and scenarios that challenge on the self and the body in relation to the other. Referencing ideas on cinematic estrangement and theatricality her multi disciplinary practice reflects upon the boundaries of neurosis and myth as a means to explore human disconnection from the lived world in favour of a private real.

Louise Manifold graduated from Central St Martins Collage London and the Galway/Mayo

Institute of Technology, Ireland. She has exhibited extensively throughout Ireland in exhibitions at The Dock Arts Center, Leitrim  Galway International Arts Festival, The Science Gallery Dublin, The MAC Belfast, Galway Arts Center and internationally with Depo Istanbul,  Haus der Kunst Munich ISCP, New York, Supermarket Art Fair, Stockholm, Red House Arts Centre Syracuse New York, Candid Arts Centre, London, The Botin Foundation, Spain.

Louise has been the recipient of awards from The Arts Council of Ireland, Culture Ireland, and

local authorities. In 2009 she was one of the four artists short-listed for the A.I.B Art prize.

Metal, Found Material and Wood 51.5cm X 25.5cm N.F.S.