Tag Archives: ephemeral art

Spiral Labyrinth

6 Mar

labyrinth

Another blast from the past, here I am at The Bagpuss Window, a semi-derelict artspace set up by Melanie Ezra and myself about 18 months ago. It only lasted 3 weeks but we, and lots of other artists and performers, did loads of arty stuff. Here I am walking the spiral labyrinth installed by prehistorian Dewi Bowen and musician/puppeteer David Pitt.

 

Artist Hannah F Lawson used one of the windowless back rooms to create some light paintings, using various lights and Tai Chi movements. Filmed by Melvyn Williams.

 

And back to now, coming up from Wednesday March 8th, a new exhibition to celebrate International Women’s Day at Cinema & Co in Swansea.

wmd-invitation

 

I am putting my series of drawings of ancient Welsh monuments on Artfinder.  If you want to see more, please click on the image below or the Artfinder link at the top right of this page.

St Elvis

A Darker Turn….

28 Feb

melvyn

This full size portrait drawing is part of a much larger piece of ephemeral drawing I made back in Autumn 2015 when my fellow artist Melanie Ezra and I took over a semi-derelict shop in Swansea’s High Street and opened it up to other artists to see what happened – we called it ‘The Bagpuss Window’. I drew intuitively with little planning and as the three weeks went by the drawing took a darker turn.

I’m going to post some of the videos made of ‘The Bagpuss Window’ by Melvyn Williams over the next few blogs because I want to show some of the fab artists who came along and did art.

Here are two, Melanie Ezra and Jonathan Green …..

 

 

I am putting my series of drawings of ancient Welsh monuments on Artfinder.  If you want to see more, please click on the image below or the Artfinder link at the top right of this page.

St Elvis

A Rare Self Portrait

25 Feb

working-on-me

I don’t often draw myself, mainly because I don’t like looking at myself; I rarely wear make up so I don’t spend much time looking in mirrors; I have always hated having my photo taken so there are no photos of me around the house. This is a rare self-portrait that I did as part of a much larger piece of ephemeral drawing back in Autumn 2015 when my fellow artist Melanie Ezra and I took over a semi-derelict shop in Swansea’s High Street and opened it up to other artists to see what happened – we called it ‘The Bagpuss Window’. I’m going to post some of the videos made of ‘The Bagpuss Window’ by Melvyn Williams over the next few blogs because I want to show some of the fab artists who came along and did art …….

 

Here’s the first one featuring musicians David Pitt and Shey Edlington ……..

 

 

I am putting my series of drawings of ancient Welsh monuments on Artfinder.  If you want to see more, please click on the image below or the Artfinder link at the top right of this page.

St Elvis

Build It And They Will Come

16 Mar

 

Psychobagpuss Bagpuss Window

Back in September 2015, my artist chum Melanie Ezra and I ripped up filthy old carpet, bleached what needed bleaching, filled the window of a semi-derelict dirty old shop with art and artefacts,  set up an event page on Facebook, opened the doors and developed our artwork in the premises during daylight hours. Over the next three and a half weeks, The Bagpuss Window, earmarked for demolition in Swansea’s High Street, brought forth an outpouring of visual and performing art and was experienced by around 200 people, artists and the public alike.

What happened?

They came, they saw, they did art.

Local charity Circus Eruption lent us some iconic chairs, copies of the classic Arne Jacobsen design so we started a photo project, asking artists who visited to have their photo taken ‘Being Christine Keeler’.

Puppeteer and musician David Pitt sat in the doorway and ‘gonged’ the street, sometimes with sunpan player, Sharon Edlington Douglas.

The Window held an ever-changing array of artistic tableaux with artists bringing in and collecting work every few days.

Tableaux

And then there was Man Arkin (Jonathan Green), whose silent performance overlooked the run-down street one afternoon.

Sylvie Evans psychedelically collaged the changing rooms…

sylvie

Hannah Lawson took over a darkened derelict space out the back for her light paintings.

Archaeologist Dewi Bowen created a Cretan Labyrinth on the floor for people to walk and contemplate.

Melanie Ezra worked on her delicate assemblages each day but also found time to paint the walls.

Rhys Trimble performed his spontaneous poetry into the street….

We did some etching

Dai Melv at Bagpuss

I did some drawing…..

And Melvyn Williams filmed it …….

Sunpan And Gong

10 Dec

The Bagpuss Window, a semi-derelict anarchic artspace, flashed into existence for three short weeks in September (2015) and then ended as abruptly as it started as the wrecking crew moved in to demolish the building. Fellow artist Melanie Ezra and I took it on at very short notice from developers Coastal Group and opened it up for artists, musicians and poets to see what happened. It was fabulous. Creative people from across Swansea and beyond wandered in and used the space to develop new work, ideas and collaborations. Film maker Melvyn Williams and I recorded what was going on and Melvyn has been editing the footage into short videos to show what happened.

Here’s the first, featuring Sharon Edlington-Douglas and David Pitt who bumped into each other one day and started playing their instruments, Sharon with a Sunpan and David with gongs. The door was open into the High Street, we were having a glorious Indian Summer, and the extraordinary sound reverberated along the road. I became absorbed in the music as I drew on the wall of the decrepit old shop and people wandered in to walk a labyrinth made from bark chippings by David and local archaeologist Dewi Bowen.

wall l

Dewi has written a book about ancient stone monuments in Siluria, South Wales, you can find out about it here. David is involved in keeping alive the Mari Lwyd in the Swansea and Gower area – you can read more about this fascinating tradition here.

Working On Me

29 Sep
working on me

Chalk and charcoal ephemeral drawing onto newspaper

I’m reaching the end of my time drawing on the wall at The Bagpuss Window, Swansea’s pop-up artspace. Tomorrow is our last day and the keys go back to Coastal Housing Group on Thursday so that the building can be demolished to make way for new social housing. So it’s going to be put to good use. The final part of my drawing is a drawing of me drawing. There’s still a fair bit of work to do on the face because the likeness isn’t very good and I had to resist the temptation to shave a couple of stone off my body! My right hand also needs a lot of work but I hope to have the whole thing finished by 5pm tomorrow so I can take a final photograph and then – the end…….

 

 

Listen And Look

19 Sep

Here I am drawing while David Pitt plays gong at The Bagpuss Window on Swansea’s High Street. Just a very short video showing the manky old shop when we got it and the still quite manky artspace it is now. It’s being knocked down in a few weeks so everything we do in there is ephemeral, it will eventually only exist in our photos and videos.

tableau

As well as the huge drawing on the wall, I’ve been getting into making little tableaux in the window. This one features tiny handmade books by Bud Francis and drawings by me.

ralph paints

And in this one, Robodog Ralph shows Bagpuss how to paint (it’s actually by Tim Swain. AI isn’t that good yet. Not round here anyway).

Drawing And Gonging

17 Sep

wall m

Coming up to the end of the second week at The Bagpuss Window and I’m getting on with the gigantic wall drawing, worked mostly intuitively. I’ve been pushing out of my comfort zone. I normally work directly from life, small, with fine pens and my drawing can be very tight and controlled. I want to use these few weeks in the old shop to experiment and loosen up my drawing as much as possible.

The past few days, we’ve been joined by David Pitt who, amongst other creative activities, plays gongs. Wonderful instruments, such incredible music. He was playing today as I was drawing and I got right into ‘the zone’, carried away by the incredible sounds and drawing automatically. When I looked at what I’d done, it was markedly different to the drawings I’d done earlier in the week, much freer. I used my fingers more, smudging the sparse features rather than fretting over details and doing loads of cross-hatching.

Gong

David Pitt and two gongs

It’s been a really good experience so far and there’s so much arty stuff happening locally that Swansea’s being called the new Montmartre. 

Heston And Husb

15 Sep

wall g

I’m carrying on with the ephemeral  wall drawing I’m doing down at The Bagpuss Window, the pop-up artspace in a shop about to be demolished in Swansea’s High Street. The drawing will be demolished at the same time. I wrote some text, “The older you get, the more dead people you know” and this is inspiring the whole piece. I’m using charcoal, chalk and conte crayon.

The door has been open and people pop in for a look. One chap came in and asked why I was drawing “….that telly chef, Heston Blumenthal“. It’s Husb! Same hairstyle though 🙂

 

 

Can’t See For Looking!

11 Sep

 4

 

Sometimes you can’t see the wood for the trees. I’ve made a start on a wall drawing onto newspaper, working from a photograph and it’s only now that I’ve put the photos onto the computer that I can see that the legs are too short! I could NOT see that when I was doing it. Leonardo da Vinci recommends checking your work in a mirror regularly because it helps to spot the wrong bits. I’ll have to take his feet down over the skirting board.

I’m working in an old shop in the centre of Swansea; it’s on loan until it gets demolished and I’m there with some other artists; we’re using as a pop-up artist’s studio. I papered the wall with newspaper and blocked some basic figures in white emulsion. I like working onto newspaper, I can incorporate images and headings into the work. I also like the texture of the charcoal on top of the brushstrokes and the wrinkles in the newspaper. I’ll be carrying on for a couple of weeks and when the demolition crew moves in, it’ll all be knocked down to make way for urban regeneration.

If you’re on Facebook, you can find out more about our temporary artspace here.

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