Artist profile: Alan Young

In celebration of October being the Brecon Beacons Art Month, we’ll be showcasing some of Brecon’s top artists and give their insight into what they love about the town. Our first post is all about the artist Alan Young.


Artist Profile: The famous Alan Young based in Mid Wales gives us an insight to what inspires him in the Brecon Beacons!

Alan Young studied at the Royal College of Art and whilst a student travelled each summer to draw and paint on the border of Powys and Herefordshire. Over the last twenty-five years he has returned frequently to the Brecon Beacons and has exhibited his work at many Welsh galleries, including the Royal Cambrian Academy, MOMA (Wales) Machynlleth, Oriel Ceri Richards at Swansea University, and the National Library of Wales, Aberystwyth, which has purchased one of his watercolours for its collection.

Here is our interview with Alan telling us why he loves Brecon and why it is such a great place for artistic inspiration.

Why Brecon?

  1. My favourite restaurant is The Griffin, Felinfach: excellent food and beer; superb views of the Brecon Beacons and Black Mountains.
    Pen y Parc
    Pen y Parc by Alan Young
  2. My favourite event in the Brecon Beacons is The Brecon Jazz Festival because I saw so much great music including Sonny Rollins, Steve Lacy, Stan Tracey, Lol Coxhill, Charles Lloyd, Andy Hamilton, Abdullah Ibrahim, Hugh Masekela, Lucky Ranku, and many others…
  3. My favourite pub is The Star, Talybont-on-Usk, beside the Brecon Canal – serves local beer and cider, and delicious cawl by the fire in the stone-flagged front bar.
  4. My favourite view of the Brecon Beacons is from Pen y Parc (above Penpont) across to mighty Pen y Fan with Parcside Cottage and Wernfawr Farm below
  5. If you’re on a budget the best advice for the Brecon Beacons is hiking
  6. The best way to see the Brecon Beacons is sitting on a hillside at Trallong or Mynydd Illtud
  7. To escape… I think drawing and painting is not an escape; it is confronting the emotional force of landscape head on.
  8. The best season to travel to the Brecon Beacons is… there’s no best time to see the Beacons, each season has its own beauty.
  9. I would like to stay in The Abersefin Farmhouse with artist Robert Macdonald as it is situated by the Usk with the Brecon Beacons towering above – a fine base for painting.
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