art

Black boys

June 16, 2019 0 Comments
Black boys

On the way to give a talk in Killay Library in Swansea last week I passed a pub I remembered seeing before.  It struck me as odd the first time.  Not because of its building or location, but because of its name – The Black Boy. Years ago such a name might not have raised […]

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‘Very infuriating, never quite right’: Kyffin Williams yr awdur

May 25, 2019 0 Comments
‘Very infuriating, never quite right’: Kyffin Williams yr awdur

Diolch o galon i Ymddiriedolaeth Kyffin Williams am y gwahoddiad i draddodi Darlith Flynyddol Kyffin Williams eleni.  Rydw i’n ymwybodol o’r darlithoedd rhagorol gan gyfres hir o siaradwyr eraill ar Kyffin.  Maen nhw wedi treulio blynyddoedd yn ymchwilio ac yn meddwl am gelf a bywyd Kyffin.  Ni allaf honni fy mod yn un o hoelion […]

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Three paintings in Vienna

April 14, 2019 1 Comment
Three paintings in Vienna

In the Leopold Museum in Vienna, a long wall is covered with small panels that show photographs and short lives of dozens of cultural figures who were active in the city at the start of the twentieth century: Freud, Mahler, Schoenberg, Musil, Wedekind, Klimt and many others – almost all of them well-known today.  Only […]

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Why isn’t visual art a big thing in Wales?

March 3, 2019 3 Comments
Why isn’t visual art a big thing in Wales?

How healthy are the visual arts in Wales?  Not just in the sense of how many or how good are the artists, but other, more contextual questions, such as:  How are they valued?   How are they supported?  How are artists encouraged and trained?  How are the arts used to bring new life to depressed communities?  […]

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Architecture in Wales: a dying art?

December 21, 2018 1 Comment
Architecture in Wales: a dying art?

John B. Hilling has just published a new book, The architecture of Wales, from the first to the twenty-first century (University of Wales Press, 2018, £27.00).  It’s an updating and rewriting of a book he produced in 1976 called The historic architecture of Wales.  I bought my copy for £5.50 in Cardiff in December of […]

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Sir John Perrot: two faces of a ruffian

December 15, 2018 0 Comments
Sir John Perrot: two faces of a ruffian

One of the images included in Wales in 100 objects is a small oil painting by an unknown artist, now in Haverfordwest Town Museum, of the Elizabethan magnate Sir John Perrot.  I chose this particular portrait, painted long after Perrot’s death, because it shows its subject as a jaunty, stylish and dashing character, whereas in […]

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In search of 100 objects

September 30, 2018 0 Comments
In search of 100 objects

September 2018 has turned out to be a month of personal endings. Three weeks ago, after five and a half years of sporadic legwork, we finished the last mile of the Wales Coast Path. This week saw the publication of two books I’ve been working on for what seems almost as long, Wales in 100 […]

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The portraits of Kyffin Williams

September 14, 2018 0 Comments
The portraits of Kyffin Williams

This article is based on a talk given to The Arts Society: Brecknock in Theatr Brycheiniog, Brecon on 11 September 2018 to mark the centenary of Kyffin Williams’s birth. Introduction My starting point is a talk given by Peter Lord as the Kyffin Williams lecture for 2018 at Oriel Môn, entitled ‘The portraits of Kyffin […]

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What the bishop said to the queen

September 4, 2018 1 Comment
What the bishop said to the queen

I suspect most people visit Llangathen, in the Tywi valley, to see the wonderful restored gardens at Aberglasne (Aberglasney in its Anglicised form). But the village has other things to offer: a surprisingly bright and roomy neo-Tudor ‘Temperance Hall’, and the large church of St Cathen. (The village used to be more populous than it […]

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Celf gyfoes yn yr Eisteddfod heb waliau

August 12, 2018 1 Comment
Celf gyfoes yn yr Eisteddfod heb waliau

Y farn unfrydol bron yw bod Eisteddfod Caerdydd 2018 yn llwyddiant ysgubol.  Dim syndod mewn ffordd: tywydd caredig, llawer o ymwelwyr, enillwyr teilwng yn y prif gystadlaethau, cerddoriaeth ragorol, a ffrinj bywiog, gan gynnwys y croeso adre ecstatig i Geraint Thomas. Ond y prif reswm, heb os, yw’r ffaith bod dim ffens o gwmpas y […]

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