Swansea College of Art and local galleries launch collaborative multi-venue exhibition celebrating creativity in the city


A multi-venue art exhibition and collaboration between University of Wales Trinity Saint David’s (UWTSD) Swansea College of Art, Glynn Vivian Gallery, GS Artists, Mission Gallery and Elysium has launched across Swansea’s city centre.

A picture of Ian Walsh, Caroline Thraves, Alex Duncan, and Kath Clewett from UWTSD at the Stiwdio Griffith launch

This special exhibition across different venues brings together the past and present of Swansea’s creative community and recognises the important collaborations between local art institutions over the past decades and centuries.

Featuring UWTSD alumni, current students and local artists as well as material from archives and interviews, the exhibition celebrates the University’s bicentenary year of Higher Education in Wales and the integral role art education by Swansea College of Art has played in the city’s cultural community and identity.

The venues opened on Saturday 24th September at staggered times so that visitors could attend each location in sequence, and there was a buzzing and vibrant atmosphere as speakers, including the Provost of UWTSD’s Swansea Campus, Professor Ian Walsh, opened the exhibition.

Lecturers Katherine Clewett and Alex Duncan at UWTSD’s Swansea College of Art were both instrumental in the gallery liaisons. Clewett says: “UWTSD is celebrating its bicentenary by hosting a series of citywide events. This is a collaboration of shared reciprocity and generosity between Swansea College of Art and local galleries that demonstrates the layers of Swansea's vibrant art scene.”

Alex Duncan adds: “Mission Gallery, Elysium, Glynn Vivian and GS Studios have all supported graduates in many ways and understood that art schools provide a space to interrogate, debate and collaborate. A place where works in progress have the chance to pause and be considered, rather than rushed past. A site where hands-on learning and experimenting can flourish.

“This is a celebration not only of Swansea College of Art at UWTSD, but an acknowledgment of the current value and relevance of art schools across the UK, where in some cases their very existence is under threat.”

Alumni artwork at Glynn Vivian gallery

Katy Freer, Exhibitions Officer at the Glynn Vivian gallery says: “We’re really excited to be involved with this project celebrating the University of Wales Trinity Saint David’s 200 year anniversary. The relationship between the Glynn Vivian and the art college has always been a close one – the first curator of the gallery, William Grant Murray, was also the first director of the Swansea College of Art.

“Glynn Vivian’s part in this project is Art Society, a two part exhibition in partnership with GS Artists that celebrates the importance of art, artists, art education and collaboration through displays of work from the Collection, archival material, photographs and people’s stories of art school.” 

UWTSD alumnus Tomos Sparnon graduated from BA Fine Art in 2018 and says: “I am very excited to take part in the exhibition at Elysium Gallery celebrating the University’s bicentenary. It's an excellent exhibition that manifests the breadth of talent nurtured by Swansea College of Art over the years. My time there was fantastic and shaped me to be the artist I am today, and I’m grateful to the Fine Art lecturers who challenged and encouraged me to push my work to the next level.”

It was also the official opening of Swansea College of Art’s new gallery space, Stiwdio Griffith. At the launch, Professor Ian Walsh said: “It’s wonderful to see alumni and staff reconnecting here today. We’ve created this unique space in Dynevor, driven by students, staff and alumni which celebrates the individuality of the artists and their response to the world in which we live today.”

The exhibition will remain open until 5th November and visitors should check opening times at each venue individually.

Founded in 1853, Swansea College of Art at University of Wales Trinity Saint David is a leading provider of Arts-related courses, ranked 1st in Wales in four Arts subjects, 4th in the UK for Film and Photography, 8th in the UK for Product Design, and 10th in the UK for Graphic Design.

Further Information

Ella Staden

Swyddog y Wasg a'r Cyfryngau

Press and Media Officer

Cyfathrebu Corfforaethol a Chysylltiadau Cyhoeddus

Corporate Communications and PR

E-bost | Email : ella.staden@uwtsd.ac.uk

Ffôn | Phone : 07384467078