Two Kings, One Exhibition: Bendigeidfran comes to join ‘Layers in the Landscape’

26.01.2018

A special Bendigeidfran tradition will take place at the University of Wales Trinity Saint David next week.

Layers Bendigeidfran

According to a medieval Welsh story in the Mabinogion, the great giant Bendigeidfran loses his head during a battle in Ireland. His head comes back across the sea to Wales and is eventually rolled all the way to London, where it is buried on the White Hill to protect Britain from all afflictions. 

As part of this year’s Hen Galan celebrations in Penarth, a model of Bendigeidfran’s head was rolled down Cliff Hill to the beach by artists Parry & Glynn, where crowds gathered to help.  Following this event, the head is once again on a journey to London, but not before stopping at various locations along the way.  Its first stop will be Lampeter, with the King of the Sea Trees, where Bendigeidfran will rest awhile as a temporary addition in the ongoing ‘Layers in the Landscape’ exhibition at the Old College, UWTSD.  It will also be an opportunity to mark the beginning of the 2018 Year of the Sea celebrations. 

Layers Bendigeidfran 2 t4

This exhibition showcases some of the work produced as part of ‘Layers in the Landscape’, which is an ongoing interdisciplinary project by Erin Kavanagh.   She said:

“I’m very pleased to be able to welcome Bendigeidfran as part of ‘Layers in the Landscape’.  This project began with him and so it is very fitting to have him come and visit. I participated in this year’s Hen Galan celebrations in Penarth, which was led by artists Richard Parry and Chris Glynn in association with the Pen-y-Garth family, Ivor Davies and the Coleridge in Wales Festival.   It was an excellent event which was very well attended, clearly showing that there is a lot of interest in the wonderful Hen Galan tradition and in the stories we share with Ireland. 

The Mabinogion tells of the Welsh giant Bendigeidfran, ‘the Blessed Brân’, who’s head was taken in sorrow after his death and buried in London.  The rolling of the head down to Penarth pier was to mark his significance and we will be re-enacting the next stage of this on campus next week.  Our event will feature a processional rolling of the sculpture down Pont Steffan Motte, with song and story from the artists themselves, who will be joined by Lynne Denman and Dafydd Eto; and we will need many other hands and voices to help! This will be followed by the public installation of the model where it will remain on display as part of the ‘Layers in the Landscape’ exhibition until the next community offers him hospitality, on his long journey east.”

The event is free and many hands will be needed, so come and help the two Kings meet, on January 31st at midday, outside the Old College in Lampeter.

For further information contact:

Erin Kavanagh at erin.kavanagh@uwtsd.ac.uk 

(#Penrolio #Bendigeidfran #findyourepic @BreninYCoedMor)

Further Information

For more information please contact Arwel Lloyd, Principal PR and Communications Officer, on 01267 676663 / Arwel.Lloyd@uwtsd.ac.uk