Wednesday, 18 July 2012

High Tide Heels

High Tide Heels - seen here

I saw these posted on Facebook today and they made me laugh out loud - imagine trying to walk in them! Very appropriate for this miserable British summer though!

Sunday, 15 July 2012

Take the M4 East then the M5 South

I have recently installed some new work at an exhibition in Somerset, Take the M4 East then the M5 South. The exhibition features six artists that have previously shown as part of Rhôd, an annual exhibition and event held in west Wales: Sam Aldridge, Kathryn Campbell Dodd, good cop bad cop, Jason Pinder, Anthony Shapland and David Shepherd.

The exhibition has been organised by Reveal Somerset following their presentation at the Rhôd symposium, held at Chapter Arts Centre, Cardiff in July 2011 and can be seen at The Brewhouse Theatre & Arts Centre, Taunton, it runs until 11 August - more pics here.

Monday, 2 July 2012

Rhôd 2012

Clare Thornton - Tact Series: Orange

I had the great privilege in 2012 to be selected as curator for Rhôd 2012. Now in its fourth year this annual contemporary art event is held at Melin Glonc, a 16th Century corn mil set in 11 acres of ground in the rural village of Drefelin in Carmarthenshire.

Over the four years of its existence the event has seen about fifty artists exhibit on the site both inside and in the grounds of the mill building. I was selected to show my own work there in 2010.

For the 2012 event in early June, I chose ten artists to participate in the show all of whom visited the mill over the preceding months and made their work in response to the site, Jonathan Anderson (Swansea), Phil Babot (Cardiff), Antonia Dewhurst (Conwy), Eddy Dreadnought (Sheffield), Maura Hazelden (Pembrokeshire), Anne-Mie Melis (Cardiff), Seren Stacey (Carmarthenshire), Clare Thornton (Bristol), Jobina Tinnemans (Pembrokeshire), Elizabeth Tomos (Carmarthenshire).

Eddy Dreadnought - Moving Away from Aborescence - Towards a Rhizomatic Future


Pete Telfer from Culture Colony was kind enough to film the event and me talking about the artists' contributions to the show - you can watch it here - if you are not a member of Culture Colony you can register for free to watch dedicated Welsh arts content.

Seren Stacey - Untitled (detail)

Sunday, 1 July 2012

The Institute for Imagined Futures and Unknown Lands...

Fern Thomas - When the Moon Fell Out of Orbit

The current exhibition at Mission Gallery in Swansea is When the Moon Fell Out of Orbit by Fern Thomas. Following her recent MA studies at Oxford Brookes University in Social Sculpture, Fern has established the Institute for Imagined Futures and Unknown Lands. Through her research she is exploring intuitive thoughts and visions brought through dreams, imaginative ideas and images to ask questions of our current condition in the world and what our future might hold. The artworks use texts, objects, structures, performances and actions to set a kind of transformative process into being through which she and her audience engage in an ongoing exploration of the resulting imagined material.

There has been a series of weekly performances during the show in which Fern relates a series of dreamed/imagined narratives full of poetic and symbolic triggers, through repeating these sequences she hopes to come to a greater understanding of their significance, these are active interventions into the collective imagination which is manifested through and around the exhibition.

The works are also beautifully imagined within the gallery space and make direct reference to the history of the architecture of Mission Gallery. 

The exhibition runs until 15 July 2012.

Antonia Dewhurst - Ty Unnos

Antonia Dewhurst - Gimme Shelter - seen here
I am really looking forward to Antonia Dewhurst's forthcoming Test Bed project at Oriel Davies Gallery in Newtown. Antonia's series of shelters, Gimme Shelter which were made as part of her degree work at Coleg Menai, Bangor in 2010/11 have led her to undertake the creation of a Ty Unnos dwelling in the parkland alongside Oriel Davies on the night of 19/20 July 2012.

"The tradition of the Ty Unnos (One Night House) was established in Wales around the end of the 18th century and beginning of the 19th century when  over 5000 Enclosure Acts were passed. This resulted in common land being passed into the hands of landowners. In response to the resulting homelessness and poverty there was a rise in the tradition of the Ty Unnos.

Thought to date back to Hywel Dda, but never enshrined in law, this tradition stated that if a house could be built between sunset and sunrise and have smoke rising from its chimney at dawn, then the builder could keep the house and the land as far as a hammer or axe could be thrown from each of the quarters.

Materials would be collected secretly over several months and all the builder's friends and family would be involved on the night. Often the only clue the landowner's agent would find was that the local carpenter was making a door for someone. However, the house was often pretty primitive and the 'door' might be a woven hazel screen, the walls of cut peat, the roof thatched with gorse or whatever was to hand. The chimney too might be of woven hazel or willow and these house-names persist today e.g. Corn Helyg, Willow Chimney.

Once the house-builder's title was established they could amass more permanent building materials and replace the original building with a more substantial dwelling and these too persist into the present day in the house-name Ty Newydd - the new house."

Antonia Dewhurst - Materials for Ty Unnos - Courtesy of Antonia Dewhurst


In keeping with the tradition, Antonia has been collecting her materials over the last couple of months and is getting ready to undertake the building of her dwelling overnight on 19/20 July.