It Was 40 Years Ago Today

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A research project devoted to uncovering and archiving the history of Performance Art in Wales.

Prosiect ymchwil i ddadorchuddio ac archifo hanes Celf Perfformio yng Nghymru.

Winner of the David Bradby TaPRA Award for Research in International Theatre and Performance 2011.

If you have any information on performance in Wales that could be of use to the project, please get in touch!

Whether you are an artist who has made performance work in Wales, or an audience member who once witnessed a performance (voluntarily or involuntarily!), we would be pleased to hear from you.
Any material will be of interest - from actual pieces of documentation to vague memories of events caught out of the corner of one's eye.
mail@performance-wales.org

Cysylltwch â ni os oes gennych unrhyw wybodaeth am berfformio yng Nghymru a allai fod o ddefnydd i'r prosiect!

Efallai eich bod yn artist sydd wedi gwneud gwaith perfformio yng Nghymru, neu'n aelod o gynulleidfa a welodd berfformiad unwaith (o'ch gwirfodd neu'n anwirfoddol!). Pwy bynnag ydych chi, hoffem glywed gennych.
Bydd unrhyw ddeunydd o ddiddordeb - o ddogfennau gwreiddiol i atgofion amwys am ddigwyddiadau a welwyd o gornel y llygad.
Mae'r manylion cyswllt wedi'u rhestru dan 'Cyswllt' yma, neu gallwch anfon e-bost i'r cyfeiriad hwn: mail@performance-wales.org

Project Director Cyfarwyddwr Prosiect: Heike Roms
Dept Theatre, Film and Television Studies, Aberystwyth University
Adran Astudiaethau Theatr, Ffilm a Theledu Prifysgol

Contact: Professor Heike Roms
Department of Theatre, Film and Television Studies
Adran Astudiaethau Theatr, Ffilm a Theledu Prifysgol
Aberystwyth University
Adeilad Parry-Williams Building
Aberystwyth SY23 3AJ,
UK phone ffon: (+44) 1970 - 621911 (direct uniongyrchol) mail@performance-wales.org

Funded by Wedi ei drawsgronni gan:
ARTS AND HUMANITIES RESEARCH COUNCIL (AHRC) (2009-2011)
(CYNGOR YMCHWIL Y CELFYDDYDAU A’R DYNIAETHAU) (2009-2011)
ARTS COUNCIL OF WALES (ACW) (2006-2008)
CYNGOR CELFYDDYDAU CYMRU (CCC) (2006-2008)
SIR DAVID HUGHES PARRY AWARD 2006, 2008
ABERYSTWYTH UNIVERSITY RESEARCH FUND (2007)

AHRC logo and link to website

Aberystwyth University Logo and link to website

Arts Council Wales logo and link to website

National Lottery Logo

Copyright © 2011 All Rights Reserved
Hawlfraint © 2011 Cedwir pob hawl

What's Welsh for Performance? Beth yw 'performance' yn Gymraeg?

An Oral History of Performance Art in Wales - Hanes Llafar Celfyddyd Perfformio yng Nghymru

Image Llun 1: Merz & Kounellis, ‘Environment’, Wrexham Eisteddfod 1977. Photo Ffoto: Lewis Allen. Image Llun 2: John Chris Jones, Timothy Emlyn Jones, Andrew Knight and a Heike Roms, 2006. Photo Ffoto: Phil Babot.

Performance at the Wrexham Eisteddfod 1977
Perfformio yn yr Eisteddfod Genedlaethol yn Wrecsam 1977

Interviewees / Cyfweleion: Timothy Emlyn Jones, John Chris Jones, Andrew Knight

In 1977 the Welsh Arts Council organised a week-long exhibition of international performance art at the Royal National Eisteddfod of Wales in Wrexham. The event, entitled How the Past Perishes - How the Future Becomes, was curated under the banner of the Free International University by Caroline Tisdall, then critic at the Guardian, and Timothy Emlyn Jones and organised for the WAC by Andrew Knight. Exhibitors involved Joseph Beuys, Mario and Merisa Merz, Jannis Kounellis, Brian O'Doherty/Patrick Ireland, Rose Finn-Kelcey, Tina Keane, Nigel Rolfe, John Chris Jones and Timothy Emlyn Jones, among others. The press reacted in a predictable way, condemning the venture for its 'shocking waste of public money', and questions were asked of the Welsh secretary.

The occasion also became known for the (unofficial) interventions staged by locally based Welsh artist Paul Davies, whose Welsh Not and Spiral Gag actions created at the Eisteddfod are widely regarded as 'the inception of a self-conscious contemporary Welsh political art' (S.Hourahane).

Timothy Emlyn Jones is Dean of Burren College of Art. Originally a performance artist who has exhibited with Beuys, Brisley and Latham, his recent work has centred on performative drawing considered as a process of enquiry. He exhibits internationally and is represented in public collections in a number of countries. John Chris Jones has been a pioneer of system design and futures research. His book Design Methods is regarded as a standard reference tool for designers. His approach to writing and publication is deeply performative, often using chance methods of composition. In recent years he has explored writing on the world-wide-web (softopia.demon.co.uk). Andrew Knight is a public art strategist and manager whose professional life centres around public engagement with contemporary culture in all its forms with a particular emphasis on the visual arts. He is a former chair of Public Art Forum and has worked for AIR and SPACE, the ICA, the Welsh Arts Council and in local authorities.

John Chris Jones, Timothy Emlyn Jones and Andrew Knight were in conversation about the international performance programme at the Wrexham Eisteddfod 1977.

Ym 1977 trefnodd Cyngor Celfyddydau Cymru arddangosfa wythnos o hyd oedd yn cynnwys celfyddyd perfformio ryngwladol yn yr Eisteddfod Genedlaethol yn Wrecsam. Cafodd y digwyddiad, oedd â'r teitl Fel y darfu'r gorffennol - fel y del y dyfodol, ei guradu o dan faner y Free International University gan Caroline Tisdall, oedd ar y pryd yn feirniad celf y Guardian, Timothy Emlyn Jones ac Andrew Knight (CCC), ac ymysg yr arddangoswyr oedd Joseph Beuys, Mario a Merisa Merz, Jannis Kounellis, Brian O'Doherty/Patrick Ireland, Rose Finn-Kelcey, Tina Keane, Nigel Rolfe, John Chris Jones a Timothy Emlyn Jones (ac eraill). Roedd ymateb y wasg gyhoeddus yn rhagweladwy, gan iddynt gondemnio'r fenter fel 'gwastraff arswydus o arian cyhoeddus', a gofynnwyd cwestiynau i Ysgrifennydd Cymru am y mater.

Daeth y digwyddiad hefyd yn adnabyddus oherwydd yr artist Cymreig lleol Paul Davies. Ystyrir bod ei ymyriadau (answyddogol) – Welsh Not and Spiral Gag - a grëwyd yn yr Eisteddfod yn 'gychwyn ar gelfyddyd wleidyddol Gymreig gyfoes hunanymwybodol' (Shelagh Hourahane).

Timothy Emlyn Jones yw Deon Coleg Celf Burren. Yn wreiddiol roedd yn artist perfformio, yn arddangos gyda Beuys, Stuart Brisley a John Latham, ond mae ei waith diweddar wedi canolbwyntio ar ddarlunio perfformiadol fel proses o ymholi. Mae'n arddangos yn rhyngwladol ac wedi'i gynnwys mewn casgliadau cyhoeddus mewn nifer o wledydd. Bu John Chris Jones yn arloeswr ym maes dylunio systemau ac ymchwil dyfodolion. Ystyrir ei lyfr Design Methods yn arf cyfeiriol safonol i ddylunwyr. Mae ei agwedd at ysgrifennu a chyhoeddi yn hynod o berfformiadol, gan iddo ddefnyddio yn aml dulliau cyfansoddi ar hap. Dros y blynyddoedd diwethaf mae wedi archwilio ysgrifennu ar y we fyd-eang, gan ddyfeisio i bob pwrpas yr hyn a elwir bellach yn flog ar y we (softopia.demon.co.uk). Mae Andrew Knight yn rheolwr a strategydd celf cyhoeddus ac mae ei fywyd proffesiynol yn canolbwyntio ar gyswllt y cyhoedd â diwylliant cyfoes yn ei amryfal ffurfiau, ond gyda phwyslais arbennig ar y celfyddydau gweledol. Y mae'n gyn-gadeirydd ar y Fforwm Celf Cyhoeddus a gweithiodd i AIR and SPACE, yr ICA, Cyngor Celfyddydau Cymru ac i awdurdodau lleol.

Sgwrsiodd John Chris Jones, Timothy Emlyn Jones ac Andrew Knight am eu cyfraniad i'r rhaglen berfformio ryngwladol yn Eisteddfod Genedlaethol Wrecsam ym 1977.

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In English / Yn Saesneg
Interviewer / Cyfwelwydd: Heike Roms
Recorded / Recordiwyd: Cardiff / Caerdydd - Space Workshop, Cardiff School of Art and Design
22 February / Chwefror 2007
[Cyf/Ref: WsWFP-4]

With the support of SHIFTwork/CSAD, UWIC. Gyda chefnogaeth SHIFTwork/CSAD, UWIC.

Image / Llun 1: Merz & Kounellis, ‘Environment’, Wrexham Eisteddfod 1977. Photo / Ffoto: Lewis Allen.
Image/ Llun 2: John Chris Jones, Timothy Emlyn Jones, Andrew Knight and/ a Heike Roms, 2006. Photo / Ffoto: Phil Babot.

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audioAudio Extract / Clip SainaudioVideo Extract / Clip Fideo

Artists Timothy Emlyn Jones and John Chris Jones and curator Andrew Knight remember Nigel Rolfe’s controversial Towers performance at the Wrexham Eisteddfod 1977.

Mae´r artistiaid Timothy Emlyn Jones a John Chris Jones, yngh?d â’r curadur Andrew Knight yn rhannu eu hatgofion o Towers, perfformiad dadleuol Nigel Rolfe yn Eisteddfod  Wrecsam, 1977.

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transcript iconFull Transcript of the Interview / Trawsgrifiad Llawn o’r Cyfweliad

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See Accessing Interviews for details of where to access the whole interview
Ewch i ‘Cael Mynediad at Gyfweliadau’ i gael manylion am sut i gael mynediad at y cyfweliad cyfan

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Part of “What’s Welsh for Performance? – An Oral History of Performance Art in Wales"
- for more information click here.
Rhan o “Beth yw “Performance” yn Gymraeg? – Hanes Llafar Celfyddyd Perfformio yng Nghymru"
- am mwy o wybodaeth cliciwch yma.

Funded by / Ariannwyd gan Arts Council of Wales/ Cyngor Celfyddydau Cymru

Keywords / Geiriau Allweddol:

click here - cliciwch yma

Back to Interviews/ Nôl i'r Cyfweliadau