About Debbie Cheevers


I’m an artist, working in Dublin, Ireland. My projects are broadly based on perception, in a range of media, and the distortion of familiarity. In practice this means the compilation of vast piles of reference materials and notes, and an inexplicable number of glue-guns.

Secret Cities consists of architectural studies, and personal ownership of public spaces. Tourism imagery can, by necessity, be a false narrative, with certain buildings and areas receiving disproportionate adulation. The public, exported view of any city can lead to a disconnect with the reality of a place. Paris Syndrome may have its roots in such a disconnect, as well as the difficulty faced by film-makers in New York, who need to cosmetically enhance the city to make it look like ‘New York’ on camera.

Beetles & Bombers deals with the distortion of history, and the passive consumption of information. In practice, it’s an attempt to convincingly determine how real material culture would be affected by happenings that belong in 1950s & ’60s B-movies. To put it another way, how would the average housewife continue to feed her family and perform her war duties, while evading giant insects, and housing a lodger who is a state-sponsored transvestite? Which knitting patterns and editions of Good Housekeeping would be useful in this scenario?

Many of the 2D works stem from historical source images that become completely divorced from their original use. Semiotics of images, whether they start as personal photographs, paintings, or advertising, seem to twist unrecognisably with frightening speed. Halloween photographs from the 1940s become as difficult to decipher as Holbein’s Ambassadors, or the Arnolfini Wedding.

Perhaps once clipped for posting on the internet they may become hard to explain, or used for fraudulent clickbait. However, if the image itself is changed even further, without any help from vague and inaccurate text, what suppositions will the viewer make?

I work on several projects simultaneously, and take private commissions on a regular basis. Selected prints are available through the shop. Please contact me if you wish to discuss purchases of originals, prints or other pieces.