Audience development project with the Trebanog Project and Artes Mundi supported by Arts Council of Wales. It’s amazing to be working with this community group 4 years later after lots of different chapters and the original Ideas People Places project. We’re at a critical point now with the project and the dialogue which has moved from an idea of sustaining making and exploring art to being interested in commissioning and making projects happen. We hope to be hosting two events in the next few months. A pop up community museum and a networking event looking at culture projects across the valleys. More news here soon.
I was recently profiled as part of the C4AA. Thanks again for visiting and for taking an interest in the work. Here’s a link https://c4aa.org/2019/01/owen-griffiths/
A series of workshops with Rebecca Spooner, Curator at PEAK Arts for the National Trust and Trust New Art working with three sites across Wales; Colby Woodlands, Dinefwr Castle and Tredegar House. We explored ideas of how to commission an artist and what that would mean for the different locations and properties?
How can art be useful?
How can culture help bring out the alternative narratives behind these histories to be more inclusive; to discuss colonialism, slavery and Empire - looking beyond the picturesque qualities of a property?
How can bring a critical lens to heritage practice?
How can we link to local economies and communities?
How do we work with agendas of sustainability and land management through culture?
How do we explore risk and failure?
How do we de-institionalise ourselves?
Posters and text works which explore some of the ideas and statements the groups have made over the period of the sessions.
Elders from Swan Gardens Retirement Center in Swansea looking at the ceramic works completed with me in 2015 for the exhibition Let’s See What Happens. All the cups were used as tea vessels during the exhibition and intervention in Swansea Market for the duration of the exhibition. The cups are now returned to the makers with some in the permanent collection at Glynn Vivian Art Gallery.
Festival Of Ideas Images - Project Skyline, PEAK Arts and Welcome to our Woods. Curated and coordinated with Melissa Appleton to create a community mapping day.
Mapping and manifesto workshops led by Owen Griffiths and Rabab Ghazoul
Friends I am creating a way of life in which your ingredients will be returned to you…
An event held within the work Becoming Garden at Dolerw Park, Newtown, June 2015. This project was commissioned by Oriel Davies for the touring exhibition Flora. Writers, academics, activist historians and documenters of the commons Iain Boal and Peter Linebaugh were in conversation with myself for this event.
Iain and Peter were on their ‘anti-austerity Celtic tour’ where they had been speaking about Magan Carta, the Commons, and the future of the UK post Scottish referendum and joined us in Newtown for this one off event. 2015 marked the 800thyear anniversary of the Magna Carta.
Peter Linebaugh, an historian currently residing in the region of the American Great Lakes (“the fresh, or third coast”), grew up amid the hopes and rubble of post-war London, was schooled by (among others) a wise woman of Appalachia, U.S. Marines in Bonn, Anglicans in Karachi, Quakers at Swarthmore, and Cold Warriors in New York.
Later he worked with E.P. Thompson at the Centre for the Study of Social History at the University of Warwick to learn the art and craft of “people’s remembrancing” which has taken printed results in Albion’s Fatal Tree, The London Hanged, The Many-Headed Hydra, Magna Carta Manifesto, and Stop, Thief!
Iain Boal is an Irish social historian of science and technics. He moved to the US in the early 80s and taught at Harvard, Stanford, the University of California, and the San Francisco Art Institute. He is affiliated with the Geography Department, UC Berkeley, and Birkbeck, University of London. He is associated with the Retort group, and is one of the co-authors of Retort’s Afflicted Power: Capital and Spectacle in a New Age of War (Verso). He co-edited with James Brook Resisting the Virtual Life: The Culture and Politics of Information (City Lights) and – with Janferie Stone, Michael Watts and Cal Winslow – West of Eden: Communes and Utopia in Northern California (PM Press), an anthology on the flowering of communalism in the Bay Area and Mendocino during the 60s and 70s. In 2005/6 he held a Guggenheim Fellowship in science and technology; The Green Machine (forthcoming) is a report on his researches into ‘the bicycle in world culture’. He lives in Berkeley and London, where he is co-director of MayDay Rooms, a safe haven for ‘archives from below’ threatened with loss or erasure.
‘For want of a generic label, we shall call it vernacular, anonymous, spontaneous, indigenous, rural as the case may be.’
Bernard Rudoflsky Architecture without Architects.
Built in 2 days, with Eifion Porter and Marc Rees as a space for community dialogues and film screenings responding to the building’s architecture and utilising materials at hand. The Tabernacle methodist chapel in Llandudno North Wales, like many chapels in Wales had come to the end of its life. The Tabernacle was gifted by Mostyn Estates in a cultural regeneration partnership project called CALL Culture Action Llandudno - to be reimagined as a new community space. Vernacular was a space to host conversations, screen films and engage people of the town in the ideas and themes of cultural and urban regeneration. Made from timber offcuts and pew cushions we created a simple building and intervention in the original Festri.