The launch event for the Cymerau project took place on Borth beach on 20 June 2015, with family activities on the beach, film screenings and refreshments. At its heart was a performance with the ‘Urchin’: a steam-bent ash sphere that forms the basis for an ongoing creative experiment by Jenny Hall and Craftedspace artists. Jenny describes the Urchin as:
“a waterborne sculpture and vessel that invites people into the wild at the threshold of land and water. Inherently playful, it can be rolled and spun on land, floated and flipped on water as well as offering itself as a life raft, precious safety net and shelter. Its hard exoskeleton shell holds a soft living body in a state of dynamic equilibrium.”
On this midsummer day it was ceremonially launched into the Irish sea by dance artist Jo Shapland who had devised a performance with the Urchin that explored the journey of a single drop of water from the source to the sea. Co-directed by Jenny Hall, the performance journey was made with artists Ariana Jordao and Jane Lloyd Francis – who had brought water, fetched on foot, from the source of the rivers Dyfi and Leri – and was accompanied by the Borth choir, Côr y Gors conducted by Nick Jones (see beautiful images by Tom Gunn below).
“My abiding memory of the event was of Côr Y Gors […] as they stood against a gray and grumbling sea, hair whipping across their faces, totally focused on their leader, who stood eyes closed feeling for the rhythms of his composition. The audience, mainly friends and family living in the community were captivated; it was a moment of symbiosis. The choir sang music inspired by the unique Borth landscape, back to the people who live within it.” – Jane Lloyd Francis.
Read Jenny Hall’s introductory blog about the Urchin.
Read Jane Lloyd Francis’s reflective blog after the launch event.
Blogs also available as PDFs below:
The event was advertised in a Cambrian News article on 11 June 2015.
ENGAGEMENT & PARTICIPATION
An estimated people participated in or attended the launch event.
ABOUT THE ARTISTS
Jenny Hall is an architectural designer, artist, and maker and the creative director for Craftedspace, a successful, experimental studio based in Wales. Both technically adept and sensitive to space, her work seeks to explore how built form can shape human experience, as well as the reverse - how human experience can shape space. She creates playful architectural spaces for people to bring to life with their own narratives and explores the intersections of play, space and performance. craftedspace.co.uk
I am a multi/interdisciplinary artist, choreographer and performer with over twenty-five years professional experience of devising and presenting dance performances and installations. My work is rooted in landscape. It is developed and presented in spaces ranging from ruined farm-buildings to traditional proscenium theatres, from natural wilderness to urban architectural interiors. I have wide experience of collaborating with artists from a broad spectrum of disciplines and bring them into both my own and freelance projects. I constantly seek out and research the body through international workshops and placements. In 1998 I established Man Troi as an identity and vehicle for the presentation of my work in the public domain.
I am a multi/interdisciplinary artist, choreographer and performer. My work is rooted in landscape and spirit of place. For over twenty years I've been creating my site specific and site sensitive performance and installation work, both solo and in collaboration with artists working in other art forms, both near to and far from my home. In 2012 I received a Creative Wales Major Award that gave me a chance to research and develop methods and fine-tune a creative device to work with 'genius loci' or spirit of place. A big part of this was my immersion in 5 wild places in Wales (starting with a Vision Quest Ceremony in Snowdonia). This had a deep impact on my practice and my wish to work with others in environmentally conscious and sustainable ways, and to develop ways to make creative offerings to the places I draw so much inspiration from. mantroi.wordpress.com
graduated in marine biology and mastered in human ecology before starting to work with the arts. In 2013 she joined Helloearth.cc visual arts company (DK) on Re+Everything at Transforma Laboratory of Contemporary Arts, Portugal. Since then, with Hello!earth, she has been involved in an ongoing research process on phenomenological performance-making that extends awareness of interrelation with the whole biosphere, developed through residencies in Iceland, Finland and Sweden facilitated by Kedja Nordic Dance Network’s Wilderness program.
Jane Lloyd Francis
My practice has been developed by theatre and live performance. I produced and directed Equilibre Horse Theatre for 15 years, a company known for its unique and diverse work. Horses were central, their mythic and symbolic presence permeating all the work.
I like to create performances and interventions that are visually led and I am interested in exploring the space that exists between theatre and the visual arts. My work is eclectic; I welcome the synchronicity generated within process, I embrace stitching together a patchwork of ideas to create responses that are textural, detailed and emotional. janelloydfrancis.wordpress.com
I live in Borth on the West Coast of Wales with my partner Helen, our dog Dan, our cat Molly and Mrs Bunny. I spent so many hours on the beach taking pictures that I named myself Seaside Man. I like nature, particularly beaches and forests, and I find the beauty of Wales inspirational. I play the guitar reasonably well and sing fairly poorly. Music is my chief interest apart from photography.
I left the computer industry in 2007 and took up photography. I gained a Masters Degree in Fine Art/Photography at Aberystwyth University, graduating in 2012. Over the last few years, I have completed a range of photography contracts for local organisations. I learned with film but now exclusively use digital. My current main camera is a Nikon D700, for which I have a good selection of top end lenses. I work to very high standards and have a deep love for all aspects of photography. I am also a skilled web designer and programmer. seasideman.com