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]

Online Sketching Sessions · Sketchbook Walks

dates for your diary

Here are the dates for our Gwendraeth Arts Lab online and sketchbook sessions between now and the end of the year.

If you’d like to join us, save these dates in your diaries, and get in touch with us by email to receive more details!

Sessions are on Saturday mornings:

October 10th

October 17th

October 31st

November 7th

November 21st

November 28th

December 5th

December 12th

Online Sketching Sessions · Sketchbook Walks · Workshops

September Saturday sessions

We are excited to announce that our online and sketchbook sessions will kick off again in September. This is our September programme:


Week 1
5th September, 10.45 on zoom for 11am start:
Thunderstorms! An online session using oil pastels and ink. (You can substitute with wax crayons/ candles and water-based paint if you don’t have these materials).

Week 2
12 September, morning – Burry Port. Mindful photography with Ray Hobbs (cameras provided).

Send us a message to sign up for this session, which has limited places.


If you are unable to get to Burry Port, you will still be able to follow a self-directed session using information and instructions that we will put on our website.

Week 3
19 September, morning – Burry Port. Mindful sketch book walk. If you are unable to get to Burry Port, you will be able to follow a self-directed session using information  and instructions that we will put on our website.


Week 4
26 September,  10.45 on zoom for 11am start :Online session, mindful printmaking. Making block prints and experimental print-making. Using the materials, sketches and inspiration from our coastal outings at Burry Port from weeks 2 & 3.


 If you’re interested, send a message to us at gwendraethartslab@gmail.com and we’ll add you to our mailing list and send out more detailed information about what you’ll need, closer to the time.

Sketchbook Walks

Sketchbook walk, Mynydd Llangyndeyrn

A lot of intense looking and drawing on Mynydd Llangyndeyrn last Saturday at our sketchbook walk.

We climbed up as far as the stone circle and trig point, stopping and drawing every few minutes on the way. It was especially interesting to layer up our drawings one on top of another, and to combine them with rubbings taken from the standing stone monument which marks the way up.

The views from the top are amazing, you get to see where you are in the world, and what you’re connected with – the lay of the land. We talked about attempting to return to the summit to make some 360 degree panoramic drawings at another time – I’ll keep you posted about that.

Art Shows · Online Sketching Sessions

Iwan Bala’s lockdown drawings

This is a very quick post, following on from our on-line drawing session on Saturday, mapping our real and imaginary lockdown journeys. I just wanted to give you a link to some very inspiring work by Iwan Bala. He’s an artist working here in Wales, and has made some fabulous drawings during the lockdown. You can see photos of them if you click this link to his page on gallery ten’s website :

https://www.gallery-ten.co.uk/iwan-bala

Online Sketching Sessions · Workshops

precious possessions

A lovely reflective session last Saturday, looking at objects that connect us with our memories, with the past, with important people: family heirlooms, a record player and records, books. We started with making some very quick drawings, this time one on top of another and using a bright and contrasting colour.

The group went on to make some fantastic longer pieces of work – you can see some of the paintings and drawings below, a couple are paired with photographs of the precious objects as they were drawn. We used contrasting and bright colour to really explore the feeling of preciousness, and it has made the drawings and paintings sing.