A Celtic Vision Quest Presented by Rose Lawless

A Strange Annunciation

Tickets on Sale in November.

Very Limited Capacity.

Offsite Event near Bray Seafront - Full location details available upon booking.


Filia Clowne is a painter who lives in Bray.She has a problem. She cannot sleep at night.

In 2018, she goes to an exhibition inspired by New Grange in a local gallery. She connects with the artist’s vision of spirals and fire symbols.

And she is moved by ancient Ireland’s quest for the redemptive light of the Solstice.

The same week she finds a painting of a strange Annunciation in a charity shop.

Medieval Mary seems to be be very put out by the Visitation of the Angel Gabriel.

In fact, as Filia and her friend Cathy joke, she seems to be telling the angel to ‘f off.’

So begins a series of strange coincidences where every significant person Filia meets is called Gabriel.

And they all seem to be leading her into a new adventure with some very unlikely characters:

Diarmaid, the grouch, who can barely conceal his dislike for her.

Ollie, the rockabilly with pyro-maniacal tendencies.

Sean, the homeless man who carries his home like a snail, and who quietly has insights of wisdom for his town, and for the world.

Like Medieval Mary in the painting, Filia is dragged into this new adventure with dubious enthusiasm.

She would like to tell all these new friends and dodgy Gabriels to ‘f off.’

But when she is asked to paint murals on the old doors of Bray by another Gabriel, the coincidences and synchronicities begin to grow too alarming, and she realises she is on some kind of Celtic-style American Indian Vision Quest.

The mural work connects her in a meaningful way with local school children, homeless people, casino gamblers, and all kinds of different persons on the streets of her town whom she would otherwise have never met.

And as her sleepless nights blare on, her strange new grouchy friends begin to reveal themselves as keyholders in her healing quest for peace.

The art work on the mural is inspired by the spirals of New Grange. But because of the influence of the strange Annunciation, it also incorporates an Irish Christian vision.

And she begins to realise that the two influences, Pagan and Christian, are linked in theme: they both sacramentalise, in different traditions, the promise of new birth:

New grange is not just a passage tomb for the departed spirits of the ancestors, but also a giant prehistoric womb for the rebirth of Spring.

And harvest.

And hope.

Then when the Pandemic hits in 2020, Filia’s mural painting spirals onto the walls of her own home.

And spirals.

And spirals.

Layer after layer after soul-searching layer.

The neighbours peer in the windows and scratch their heads, and one friend dubiously says that it looks like a ‘H-block protest.’

To the outside world she has gone too far, but for Filia herself, she has come too far now to quit.

Over the next two Pandemic years, while the whole world is house-bound, she doggedly transforms her house into a personal installation.

And in service to this strange Celtic-vision quest, it becomes a combination of a Christian chapel and a Passage Tomb-Womb.

And as the paint slowly spirals into the vision of these two worlds, Filia begins to find her peace.

And blessed sleep.

As she rebirths a new vision of herself with paint and with words.

The words that have become the story for this year’s Yarn festival.

Now she welcomes you into her home to share in this modern-day vision quest, linking us with our ancestors of 5,000 years ago.

You are invited to participate, as we wait in darkness for the solace of our own Solstices, bringing together pagan and Christian and modern-day community, in a transforming search for light, meaning… and the peace of a good night’s sleep.

A message of Good News for our times.And for our well-loved towns.