Vulgar Earth exhibition at the Theatr Brycheiniog

Vulgar Earth – a timber giant, meta- mechanical sculpture, commentary and more!
An eclectic and thought provoking exhibition has opened in The Andrew Lamont Gallery at Theatr Brycheiniog in Brecon. Visitors are greeted by the magnificent reclaimed timber and steel giant “Reaching The End’ created by Glenn Morris. Reminiscent of The Engine Man currently on tour in Wales, this vast crawling figure peers at guests from behind the light well that showcases Simon Meiklejohn’s ‘Dark Viscous’ and his mechanically engineered steel creations that stand proud in the front lobby of the gallery. Tina Walton’s stunning textile installation ‘..what is the cost?’ of 10 thread woven bodices hanging over the theatre’s stairs leads people into the exhibition.

Vulgar Earth are a not for profit artist’s collective who believe that the world has got to ‘a
state of life that calls for another way of living’ and is open until May 20 th in the second
floor gallery at the theatre. The intention of the group’s exhibitions is to generate an
emotional awareness through art and to question and discuss the direction humanity is
going and the individuals place within it.

After a very successful show at The Canwood Gallery near Hereford in 2017 the group were approached by Punch Maughan, the theatre’s Visual Arts Coordinator to bring their thought provoking exhibition to Brecon as part of the gallery’s newly launched aspiration to feature ever more ambitious exhibitions. As well as those mentioned above featured in this year’s exhibition is the work of Verity Howard, a ceramic artist who responds to subjects surrounding people, history and places, five sculptures by Jim Carter sit well in the floor to ceiling windows overlooking the canal. Kim Colebrook has brought her very poignant porcelain memorial to Aberfan. This four part piece represents the way that people cope with a disaster that tore the heart out of a
community and the loss but also the strength of individuals who survive. David England is a self taught sculptor and the exhibition includes his piece ‘Choices’ in anacaster stone as well as his ‘Magic Theatre (Plato’s Cage)’ which is voicing an anger at corporate manipulation through public media. A stunning bronze ‘Silent Spring 2’ by Glenn Morrise completes the sculpture inventory.

On the walls is the work of Jackie Yeomans who paints on paper with soils, clays & earth pigments and Peter Horrocks who also uses natural earth pigments, clays, graphite, slate and charcoal dust in his practice. Peter has mined raw ochres from 300 feet down iron ore mine at the Clearwell Caves in the Forest of Dean and also collected others on his travels in the UK and abroad. Traces and Landmarks are themes in which he explores marks left behind in nature and their possible meaning. In contrast the ultra-violet reactive, abstract, acrylic paintings of Glyndwr Brimacombe lit up by ultraviolet lighting as you arrive by the stairs to the gallery add a significant wow factor – complimenting the large oil paintings of Rob McCarthy at the far end of the gallery.

Other contributors to the show are Maisie Noble who brings her project: ‘Beacons’ which is an immersive, cyclic narrative that was developed through Maisie’s MA investigation into the complex and multifaceted discourse surrounding Rewilding in the Welsh uplands. Seen through Virtual Reality binoculars whilst standing in a wonderful fleece floored pen, her wordless story prompts us to reconsider both our ownership of and relationship to the Brecon Beacons; a territory that has been tamed for human need. Whilst the VR binos can be enjoyed by adults and youngsters – smaller children can also enjoy an animation by Anita Sanchos. Frida Go, artist adventurer, is showing two video installations and a sound installation reflecting on justice, what we are doing on the planet and that everything stolen will eventually be taken back. Feeling life as we know it to be approaching the ends of the earth, he’s fertilising fresh futures with wild cultures of the past.

The show was opened by a performance artist, Jo Bushell and the film of this short piece will be showing in the gallery in the next few weeks. This is an exhibition that needs time and contemplation – it is well worth it!

The Andrew Lamont Gallery is open 10am – 4pm every day of the week.
Contact: Visual Arts Coordinator: Punch Maughan punch@brycheiniog.co.uk / 07736 062849

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