Art Shows · Workshops

Unbound exhibition

We are so excited to be supporting this art exhibition in Kidwelly:

This is an exhibition of works by three artists associated with Gwendraeth Arts Lab : Suzie Ross, Roz Moreton and Sian Barlow.

This exhibition is very simple.  It is about attention and joy. It is an experiment in inhabiting the places which we have a tendency to move through, unseeing. Suzie, Roz & Sian gathered at the garden of Lady Street Gallery, Lindsey’s garden, and made work in and from the place. 

It was an experiment to see what comes from being (together) in a specific place, a specific moment in time – and to make that into an exhibition, fitted to the place.

A mention for the plants of the garden, which were so much a part of it:

Wych Elm. Beech. Sycamore. Ivy. Ash. Hazel. Apple. Pear. Willow. Grasses. Runner Bean. French Bean. Rosebay Willow Herb. Dead Nettle. Hogweed. Borage. Comfrey. Courgette. Raspberry. Rocket. Salvia. Rose. Cottoneaster. Hydrangea. Lords and Ladies. Nettle. Bramble. Geranium. Teasel.

The work reflects the contained and the uncontained of the garden: views into and through and under. Plants and trees, living inside and outside of the fences and edges, freely seeding. Crows flying over and over, fussing. Bees visiting. Sounds from neighbours: talking, coughing, laughing. The wind blowing through and the light bouncing in, dazzling. The first meetings in the garden were in August, and so the work reflects almost a quarter of the year; its movement unceasing, insistent.

The physicist Carlo Rovelli says that we are mistaken to think about the structure of the cosmos in terms of objects  or things :”The world is not so much made of stones as of fleeting sounds, or of waves moving through the sea.”

The work is “unbound” because it is informal, free. The only rule was seeing what would grow through spending time in the garden. 

I remembered what it was like when as a child I was told to go off and play in the garden of an unfamiliar house.

I am inviting the viewer to explore the hidden green spaces of an unfamiliar garden, as though with the eyes of a child – from the ground up.

Suzie Ross

“Unbound” will be held on the first two weekends in December at Lady Street Gallery, 41 Lady Street, Kidwelly, SA17 4UD .

Opening times 11am-4pm.

Special events :

  • online tour and workshop with Roz Moreton: 4th December from 11am
  • ‘In conversation’ with the artists: 11th December 4-5pm

We are sorry but there is unfortunately no disabled access to this pop-up gallery, which is in the staircase of a very old building. We invite disabled visitors to access our zoom tour on December 4th at 11am, (or afterwards on our YouTube channel).

A link to the online event will be posted separately.

Art Shows

Trawsffurfiadau / Transformations

Thanks to everyone who has visited the Transformations exhibition which we at Gwendraeth Arts Lab have helped towards putting on in the fabulous Powerhouse – Pwerdy, Llandysul ; and which I oversaw the curation of. It’s only open for one more day, so if you’d like to see it you’ll need to head over before the end of the day tomorrow, Tuesday 2 November.

And if you didn’t manage to get along to see it, I’ve put together a gallery of images to bring an experience of it to you :

The show was an exploration of the transformations that occur in the everyday and the natural world: how weather, seasons, circumstances and time break down and transform matter; and how our material acts of drawing, tearing, weaving, casting, assembling and building can transform our view of our world.

“We question what it is that we love, value, preserve, remember. Many of the works are vessels: holding imaginative spaces open; containing the possibility of small transformations.”

And some of the real highlights :

Arthur Thomas, telling the stories which adhere to commonplace objects:

“This installation is inspired by the discovery of objects found in a drawer used by my mother, leading me to explore our relationship with the value we put on objects, however insignificant they may seem to be. My work alludes to how objects can be secreted away, intentionally or unintentionally, to be rediscovered from time to time, leaving a trace of a past existence.”

Keziah Ferguson bringing our attention, through her sculptures, to an underlying awareness and comfort in land and belonging:

“Often materialising through the form of various vessels and organic shapes, Keziah’s practice aims to illustrate the sense of safety and motherly belonging that she receives from the land.”

Kerry Collison, confronting questions of gender and fertility with her sculptural practice and hot metal and performances:

“There is a focus on the motif of the vessel, a form that gestates and incubates, especially hot or living. This becomes an archaic metaphor for the female body; functional or unfunctional.”

Julie Hutton, exploring alternative possibilities through visual metaphor in her large ceramic works:

“An official feminist pataphysician since 2020, Julie employs the ‘Pataphor’, an unusually extended metaphor, where an idea or concept takes on a life of its own.”

Angela James creating vessels that exist at the verge of disintegration:

“They are non-functional and ephemeral, on the verge of disintegration, but containing a space which, like the seed head, encompasses loss, preservation and new possibility.”

And my own work (Sian Barlow), my rewoven drawings and “A bowl for sharing small joys”:

“A bowl for sharing small joys:

the texture of the world is fine-grained

the texture of our lives is fine-grained

the crushing idea that we have to be “big” to make a difference

when it’s clear that every action makes a difference to something

and that small things are important

in, of and to themselves”

[Photos by Kerry Collison / Sian Barlow / Natalie Hughes-Owen]

Uncategorized

Joining Us Virtually on Our Sketchbook Walk

Morning, our sketchbook walk is at 10.45am at Glan-yr-Afon – River Walk Kidwelly this morning.
If you can’t make this mornings sketchbook, don’t worry you can join us on your own one..

Below are some simple instructions on what you can do on your own sketchbook walk.

Explore, play with your sketching and have find joy in the world that surrounds you!

Drawing materials of your choice –  we suggest dry materials like pens, felt-tip pens, pencils and maybe coloured pencils, crayons, charcoal or pastels.If you can’t make it and are doing this from YOUR HOME then you also need a mobile phone, watch, or stopwatch –  to use as a timer.

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MINDFULNESS
Start by taking a moment to do a relaxation and mindfulness exercise as or before you start.Breathe deeply.Close your eyes and pay attention to the sounds around you and the air around you.Pay attention to your body – especially to your hands, your arms, your eyes.

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WALK (IN YOUR HEAD)WALK – DRAW – WALK – DRAW
Now set your timer for one minute.You are going to walk for a short time, and then draw, then walk, then draw, and so on.(Its important to set the timer so that you don’t spend lots of time choosing what to draw. The idea is that when your timer tells you to stop, you stop. Then draw and record the things that you see. Think of this as making a kind of visual diary of your walk.)

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1 MINUTE DRAWINGS
You can start by warming up with 5 very quick drawings –  after walking for no more than 1 minute, and then no more than one minute drawing. You can do these on the same piece of paper, one on top of the other.Decide on an approach before you start each drawing.You can use some of the exercises that Roz has been doing with us over the last few weeks:

  • drawing with a continuous line without looking at the paper
  • drawing with your other hand
  • using a paler colour, drawing only the shapes of ‘negative spaces’ (for example the shape of the sky as it meets the tops of buildings and the trees)

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5 MINUTE DRAWINGS
Continue your walk. Stop and make a drawing every 5 minutes. These drawings should take 5 minutes.You can do as many as you like, but at least 4!(You can adapt this method and do the drawings much more often if your walk is a very short one – I have done this kind of exploration in my very short garden, and made a drawing every 5  paces).As before, decide on an approach before you start drawing.You could try any mixture of these suggestions:

  • A negative spaces drawing – drawing the  areas between and around objects, and drawing and blocking in those shapes.
  • A magnified drawing of a tiny detail of what is around you: for example, a leaf, a corner of a brick, a piece of litter, a bit of tree bark.
  • A drawing that is looking through something – from one space into another: for example, a gate, a bridge, a doorway, through trees to open space, an alleyway.
  • A drawing of a boundary: for example,  where water meets land, where a road is edged or where it cuts through another kind of space, a junction, the place where something human-made meets something natural, a bridge, a bank, a fence, a wall.
  • A drawing with words: try writing down on your drawing the things that you hear or feel or remember, the names of the colours that you are seeing, the words that you see written on your walk.
  • A drawing following contours and lines (a continous line drawing) without looking at your paper.
  • A coloured drawing that is in more than one layer. So – draw the landscape in one colour pen  for 1 and a half minutes, then turn your body a quarter turn, and draw it again in another colour on top, and repeat, and repeat.

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KEEP A RECORD Don’t forget to keep your drawings  – and send some images in to our email for the website if you can!

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WE HOPE YOU ENJOY YOUR EXPEDITION!!!

Sketchbook Walks

This Sundays Sketchbook Walk


We tried to sketch in the rain on our last sketchbook walk on the 15th but we were defeated, as it chucked it down! – though there were a few late comers who managed a couple of sketched in between the showers! And we had some new people turn up too!
So we are trying again as it due to be clear and dry – famous last words!!
So here are the details:

Sunday 29th August 2021 11am – 12.30pm
At Glan-Yr-Afon River Walk, Kidwelly, SA17 4UU
The SUN is scheduled to Shine !!! Meeting at the Glan-Yr-Afon car park, just off Bridge Street, Kidwelly from 10.45am start time 11am

**Bring your sketchbook & pencil/pens. Forgotten anything, we can provide art materials for you**
We would love to see you, if you can make it then I will be sending through some sketching instructions that we did when we did this in the first lockdown – all that time ago, so you can do your own local sketching walk.
Take care and see you Sunday.

Photography Sessions · Workshops

Mindful Photography – Light & Shade

This Saturday 20th March 2021 our session is Mindful Photography with Ray Hobbs. 

Working with Documentary Photographer Ray Hobbs we will explore ‘Mindful Photography in your home’ looking how to look at your home in a new light…

Materials: your camera, camera phone and you!

For this Mindful Photography workshop, we shall be considering Light & Shade in the home. The brief is to produce a set of five images using any camera or phone you may have.
The objective is to consider how natural and/or artificial light impacts on our home environment.
It may be the passing of light through a glass bottle containing a coloured liquid or the effects of shadow on a surface or how light bends around objects; the choice is yours.
I shall be presenting a short PowerPoint presentation of images I took with a simple compact camera. 

You are then invited to email your chosen five images to me via WeTransfer with any comments or poems you may wish to accompany the images. I will prepare a PowerPoint presentation of your images for presentation for Saturday 27th March and following any amendments you may wish to make; I’ll create a blog for you to share. 

I look forward to seeing you on Saturday 20th March for the workshop. 

Interested in joining us then please email us at gwendraethartslab@gmail.com. We look forward to seeing you!

Workshop Details:

Mindful Photography – Light & Shade

Deliver by Documentary Photographer Ray Hobbs

Date: 20th March 2021

Time: 10:30 – 12 noon

Via Zoom – please email for log in Details

Online Sketching Sessions · Workshops

Drawing Poems

On Saturday 6th March we are ‘Drawing Poems’ in our Online Session, inspired by the work of Peter Blake and his 20+ years art project of recreating the characters of Dylan Thomas’s ‘Under Milk Wood’.

To find out more about his project go to the National Museum of Wales website.

Look forward to seeing you!

Want to join us from 10.30-12 noon on Saturday 6th March 2021 then please email us at gwendraethartslab@gmail.com.

Online Sketching Sessions · Workshops

Joy of Drawing

We are back with our online sessions, we’ve had an extended break and missed you all! Hope you have been keeping safe and well?

We thought that we would get back into the swing of things by a gentle 2 hour session with the ‘Joy of Drawing’.

We are going to set out to rediscover our Joy of Drawing and blow the cobwebs away.

Session Details
You will need a Plate and Knife and Fork – for our subject!

  • We will do a warm-up using our bodies and minds…
  • Then into a series of exercises using coloured pencils/pens/pastels
  • Making delicious fine line marks experiments,
  • Drawing around the plate and knife and fork
  • And drawing our faces from memory!
    • using quick line techniques
    • other hand
    • blind
    • 360/180/90/45 degree sketches
    • Additional pattern techniques
    • Plus Blending and blurring lines…

Required Materials
What ever you have to available:
Pencils, coloured crayons, wax crayons, pastels, oil/chalk, pens (biros) felt tip pens, marker pens.
Paper – Scraps of any type of paper, coloured, light cardboard

Details of the Session:

Saturday 30th January 2021 10.30am – 12.30pm

Via Zoom – to register please contact Roz on gwendraethartslab@gmail.com or 07818 036 434

FREE & OPEN TO ALL Complete Beginners – Experienced Artists

Online Sketching Sessions · Workshops

Mask Making Part One

We are having a week off this Saturday! – So No Online Session on the 14th November – But we are back on the Zoom on the 21st November at 11am with Papier Mache Mask Making Part One.

We will be showing two techniques on how to make the mask:

  1. Using Aluminium Foil that you mould to your own face
  2. Using Newspaper and Aluminium Foil that you create into a mask shape 

What you will need:

  • Newspaper – Lots
  • Tissue Paper
  • Aluminium Foil – Thick 
  • A Board – or very thick cardboard to use as a base to mount the mask on when you are working on it
  • Thin cardboard/Egg boxes/Textured card 
  • Masking Tape
  • Scissors
  • For the Paste – Plain Flour or Corn Flour
  • Water
  • Spoon
  • Bowl
  • Plate
  • Cloth – to wipe your hands

For the Design and Decoration of Mask

  • Paper
  • Pencils/Pens/Crayons
  • Paints/Brushes

Collection of items for your garden or home that you might want to include with your mask

  • Seeds
  • Feather
  • Leaves
  • Twigs
  • Strings/Ribbons
  • Fabrics
  • Etc…
  • Objects that can create textures and patterns 

See you on the 21st November 2020 at 11am for Papier Mache Mask Making Part One.

Not signed up already then please email Roz at gwendraethartslab@gmail.com