Friday 30 September 2011
Cadw, the Welsh Government’s historic environment service, is encouraging visitors to put pen to paper and explore their creativity during October’s ‘Drawing Age’ themed campaign in support of Big Draw 2011. Eight Cadw sites across Wales will be taking part in the scheme which involves a series of workshops which it is hoped will lead to visitors creating an artwork themselves or helping produce an artwork.
The Big Draw 2011 sites are Plas Mawr in Conwy, Strata Florida Abbey, Blaenavon Ironworks, Caerphilly Castle, Raglan Castle, St Davids Bishop’s Palace, Conwy Castle and Harlech Castle.
The idea of the Big Draw at Cadw’s heritage sites is to encourage artists and art groups to work and to explore the site through various mediums, whether that is drawing, painting or other ways of making marks. The overall theme is perfectly suited to Cadw sites as there aren’t many more impressive statements of age than a castle, Abbey or industrial ruin!
At Plas Mawr, Conwy (October 1-16), a ‘Design a postcard’ competition will be held in conjunction with Blahdblah studio. The winning card, which will be chosen by Neil Rylance of Conwy’s Blahdblah, and published as a limited edition. During October, brass rubbing will also be available in the house.
Children will be designing their own coat of arms at Conwy Castle on Monday 24 and Tuesday 25 October. An explanation of heraldry will be given by the custodian and children will be encouraged to draw on blank shields and bookmarks provided by the castle..
At Harlech Castle on Wednesday 26, Thursday 27 and Friday 28 October a local art group will be producing an image of the castle on a 12 metre wide canvas and inviting visitors to join in drawing the outline and adding colour. The finished item will be hung at the castle.
A local art group will work at Strata Florida Abbey on Wednesday, October 19 under the leadership of artist Tracy Ann Smith. Using multimedia, collage and pastel the workshop will roam the site gathering their impressions of Strata Florida and getting visitors to also join in with the project. The results will be displayed at the Abbey. Workshops will take place at 11:00am and 1:30pm. Booking is advisable.
Blaenavon Ironworks will welcome renowned industrial artist Goff Danter on Friday October 28 as he leads a series of workshops to encourage the exploration of the ironworks with pencil and paper. Several local artists will be working with Goff and getting visitors to the site active with pen and pencil.
At Caerphilly Castle from Monday October 24-Friday October 28, children will be encouraged to design their own coat of arms and shields which they can make and then keep, while adults and older children explore the castle through pencil and paint with the Caerphilly Art group. A prize will be given for the best painting.
Feathers and Fortress drawing workshops will run continuously at Raglan Castle on Monday 24 October concentrating on the structures of the castle and the display of birds of prey that would have been used for hunting there in past times.
Capturing images of St Davids Bishop’s Palace from Saturday 22 October-Sunday 30 October will be the task in hand using large sand trays and found items such as stones, feathers, sticks and string. Each tray will be located close to a particular feature of the site such as a window or door. The image will as a result change as the day goes on reflecting an individual’s perceptions of the site. The results will be photographed at the end of each day and displayed at the site.
The Big Draw is an attempt to get more people drawing and to use drawing as a way for people to explore the past, the present and the future. Whether putting pencil to paper for the first time or a life-long drawing aficionado, Big Draw is designed for all levels of abilities – the important thing is to get back to the drawing board!