International scale installations to mark 'Year of Legends'

Wednesday 22 June 2016

Flint Castle

Flint Castle

In the same week that the Wales’ football team delivered a legendary performance against Russia, the Welsh Government has announced its own major competition to mark the 2017 Year of Legends.

The competition will see visual landmarks, inspired by Wales’ many legendary figures installed at some of Wales’ most loved and iconic sites.

Year of Legends follows on from the success of the 2016 Year of Adventure and aims to raise the profile of Wales’s tourism offer and attract even more visitors to Wales in 2017.

The competition will be run by the Welsh Government's heritage team, Cadw. It will see up to two major landmarks inspired by Welsh legends constructed and installed during the whole of the Year of Legends through a ‘design and build’ open competition.

The Welsh Government will assemble an expert panel including judges from Cadw, Visit Wales and art institutions, with the task of shortlisting the ideas before an announcement on preferred designs this autumn. The successful artist or artists will design, create and install the landmarks. One installation is guaranteed for Flint Castle as part of enhancement works at the attraction, with a second landmark structure at a Cadw site to be determined on the basis of design entries.

Taking inspiration from Wales’s many legends – from the mythical to the historical and sporting heroes to literary greats – ‘landmarks’ can take the form of mobile structures, performance art creation, or semi to permanent installations. The success of the Angel of the North and the Poppies installation is testament to the impact of art installations on tourism.

Announcing the plans, Ken Skates, Cabinet Secretary for the Economy and Infrastructure, said “We’re always looking at new and imaginative ways to bring Wales’s historic sites to life.  We have already illuminated a number of our iconic sites in red in support of the Wales team’s truly inspiring Euro 2016 campaign and feedback from across Wales has been hugely positive.  

This is just one example of how our sites can be celebrated and enjoyed in a new way and I am sure that innovative landmarks inspired by some our greatest legends, will catch people’s imaginations and lead them to visit Wales and its incredible historic sites.

“By launching an open competition, we hope to see highly-creative and commercially-driven project proposals that focus on attracting visitors to our historic sites, while generating income to safeguard their future.

"We are particularly keen to welcome bids from arts bodies and those that have match-funding to help deliver their proposal. For the Year of Legends 2017, our focus will be on reputation changing, bold, creative and innovative projects.

"From the legend of King Arthur to the football legends that are emerging this summer in France, Wales has a wealth of material for creative people to draw on.

"The unveiling of a world-class installation at Flint Castle will also assist in developing the A55 as Europe's Culture Corridor, attracting more tourists to Wales and making the route a unique visitor experience."

To register your interest in the sculpture design competition, contact.  cadw@wales.gsi.gov.uk