Tag Archives: urban regeneration

Sunpan Scribbles

7 Jan


I think it’s important to draw. It underpins my artistic practice. I know a lot of people who find drawing demoralising because they can’t do it “right” but it’s a hard thing to do, like playing a musical instrument and you can’t expect to turn out a perfect drawing each time, or even for the majority of times that you draw. It’s the act of drawing that’s important because you learn something from doing it.

Today I was down at The SPace in Swansea’s High Street and artist and musician Sharon Edlington Douglas popped in with her Sunpan. She played it – beautifully- to the appreciation of the knot of people in the SPace. I scribbled her. She was moving and it was a quick sketch and it’s no great work of art and won’t make it into any exhibitions, but it’s still important to do these speedy scribbles, to try and capture movement and to be in the moment. I think so, anyway.

Here’s Sharon playing her Sunpan a while back at The Bagpuss Window, with Gong musician David Pitt.

The SPace is a short-term pop-up gallery and artspace, a partnership between Swansea Print Workshop and Coastal Housing Group. It’s open 11.30 – 5.00, Wednesdays to Saturdays until mid-February at 217, High Street, Swansea SA1 1PE.

Monstrous Mural And The Lizard Den

17 Nov

High Street

Today I joined some fellow artists to take over the keys for a new artspace in Swansea’s High Street, an area of urban regeneration. It’s a second, temporary, setting for Swansea Print Workshop and we have it for three months, to do experimental work, to exhibit, to interact with the community and to collaborate. It’s a fairly new commercial premises owned by the Coastal Group Housing Association and the area is part of the new Urban Village scheme.


We got stuck in straight away. One side of the vast space is in good nick but the other side has the most monstrous mural I’ve ever seen. The figures are either hideous – a WAG fairy princess complete with fake tan – or terrifying. Mad eyed goblins and psychopathic Medieval knights glower under a sky heavy with huge menacing crows. To cap it all, it’s been painted in graffitti spray paint so it will need quite a few coats of white to get rid of it. The ceilings are very high so we had to make sure that Health and Safety was to the fore. And there was a Lizard Den, without a lizard, but going by the smell, there was plenty of lizard wee soaked into the wood. I managed to avoid cleaning that.

Can’t See For Looking!

11 Sep



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.

The Christine Keeler Chair

10 Sep

keeler chair

It’s our third day at The Bagpuss Window, a new artspace in an old shop in Swansea’s High Street, an area of urban regeneration, which means it’s really run down. We were lent some funky chairs, copies of the iconic Arne Jacobsen chair, made famous in Britain by an infamous photograph of the callgirl, Christine Keeler during the Profumo scandal during the 1960s.

I though it would be a bit cool to invite visitors to The Bagpuss Window to pose on the chair like Christine Keeler, except with their clothes on. Here they are so far.

If you’re on Facebook and want to see more of what we’re up to at The Bagpuss Window, take a look here

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