AGORA - A brand new artistic installation on the Eisteddfod Maes

3 August 2019

Marc Rees, the internationally renowned art installation and performance creator and curator is leading the AGORA team.  Marc is known for creating an artistic response to places and communities, in an often unusual and challenging way.  And the AGORA design and structure will definitely create excitement on the Eisteddfod Maes. 

The project is a chance to celebrate one of Llanrwst’s most extraordinary historical facts.  In 1947, the Town Council contacted the United Nations to claim their seat on the Security Council, stating that Llanrwst was an independent state within Wales.  The submission failed. The aim is to honour the audacity of the submission by constructing a temporary parliament on the Maes, like a People’s Pavilion.  Organisers are working with architects Jenny Hall and Tabitha Pope and want AGORA to be one of the main attractions on this year’s Maes.

This project has received funding via the Tourism Product Innovation Fund (TPIF) and supported through the Welsh Government Rural Communities - Rural Development Programme 2014-2020, which is funded by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD) and the Welsh Government, the Fund aims to encourage new innovative product ideas working in partnership which will have a greater impact and attract more visitors.

Marc Rees said, I want to shine a light on Llanrwst’s historic yet topical reputation by constructing a temporary independent space in which to imagine new possibilities and visions of the future; creating an agora, a gathering place for the assembly of active citizens.

“The project’s egalitarian foundation is represented in its very fabric. We have invited the people of Conwy to donate their discarded wooden doorswith which we have built our own AGORA.

“Inspiration for the design came from the recent unveiling of Llys Llywelyn at St Fagans. This re-creation of a Royal Court of the Princes of Gwynedd was based on the surviving remains of Llys Rhosyr in Anglesey which was excavated by the Gwynedd Archaeological Trust in the 1990s.

“Nothing remains of the original court apart from its foundations which have provided the clues for archeologists and architects to interpret and reconstruct Llys Llywelyn. Our AGORA is a re-imagining of their re-imagining.

“What immediately struck me upon visiting the Llys Llywelyn was the presence of a chevron pattern throughout the interior, framing the arches, columns and windows. Within heraldry these V-shaped marks and their repetition instil formality, regulation and princely purpose. The vivid red set against the white lime plaster walls is reminiscent of red and white caution tape used oncontemporary building sites. 

AGORA is constructed from scaffolding wrapped in red and white caution tape contained within a crown of blackened doors.

You can be part of the AGORA project at four exciting events across Conwy County:

 

16:00, Saturday 3 August, Parc Gwydir, Llanrwst:

Ôl-Llywelyn

From the town centre to the Eisteddfod maes, a tour to talk about Cymru, Lloegr a Llanrwst (Wales, England and Llanrwst). A walking conversation discussing all things and the world. A journey of discovery and sharing, about history, living and being.

You will share, chat, take action, discuss and take pictures - join us and follow.

Performer: Eddie Ladd

Concept: Marc Rees

Creative Producer: Iwan Williams Ffiwsar

Note: The performance begins in Llanrwst and finishes on the Eisteddfod Maes. Please use the shuttle buses. We will be walking for about an hour and a half and stopping for a cuppa half way. Bring suitable clothing for the conditions and anything else you need.

 

21:00, Saturday 3 August, Ffin-y-Parc, Llanrwst (doors open at 20:45):

LLinell | LLinyn

For one night only, Mist will be inhabited and animated by dancers who will create a movement score responding to the dynamics of the sculpture and music from a live harpist where the taught strings of the instrument and the installation become intertwined via a mesmerising duet.

The artwork Mist by Sébastien Preschoux is a large scale thread sculpture commissioned by Migrations, stretching majestically from tree to tree within the grounds of Ffin-y-Parc Gallery near Llanrwst

Choreographer: Matteo Marfoglia

Dancers: Angharad Harrop, Angharad Jones

Harp: Helen Wyn Pari

Sound Artists: Alan Chamberlain, Ed Wright

Concept: Marc Rees

Creative Producer: Iwan Williams Ffiwsar

Mist

Artist: Sébastien Preschoux

Curator: Karine Décorne, Migrations

Note: Limited numbers - entry only for the fi rst 100 people. Limited parking space available.

 

11:30 & 15:30 Monday 5 – Wednesday 7 August; 11:30, Thursday 8 August, AGORA, Eisteddfod Maes:

Neither Here Nor There

Funny, intimate, a bit livid, powerful, powerless and patient.

Eddie and Sara host a series of conversations that happen over 6 minutes.

In Neither Here Nor There Eddie and Sara have questions about how it’s all going, big questions about the world, small questions about the state of your garden. Complexity takes time, it requires multiple voices, many levels of expertise. They’d like you to join the conversation.

Eddie and Sara are two middle-aged, award-winning, international provincial artists. Neither Here Nor There was created by artists Jo Fong and Sonia Hughes and inspired by research undertaken by Frank Bock and Katye Coe. 

Commissioned and supported by Arts Council of Wales, Chapter and LAUK Diverse Actions.

“An amazing experience! It was strange and challenging, but mostly it was a lot of fun!” - Audience member

A leap of faith - Culture Colony

Performers: Eddie Ladd, Sara McGaughey

Created by: Jo Fong, Sonia Hughes

Curator: Marc Rees

Creative Producer: Iwan Williams Ffiwsar

 

13:00, 13:45 & 14:30 Tuesday 6 – Wednesday 7 August, The Quay, Conwy &

13:00, 13:45 & 14:30 Thursday 8 August, Venue Cymru, Llandudno:

Wal Werin

A new playful reinterpretation of traditional Welsh folk dance – performed vertically!

Choreographers: Kate Lawrence, Angharad Harrop

Performers: Lisa Spaull, Angharad Jones

Harp: Ceri Rimmer

Concept: Marc Rees

Creative Producer: Iwan Williams Ffiwsar