The Monmouthshire and District National Eisteddfod Young Artist’s Scholarship has been awarded to an art student from Ceredigion, for a video representing the loss in Welsh culture.
Gwenllian Llwyd won the £1,500 offered this year by Alun Griffiths (Contractors) Ltd, for a piece of work combining a mixture of pictures and film clips. The aim of the young artist, who lives in Talgarreg near Llandysul, is to question the decline in the number of chapels in her area.
According to one of the selectors, Anthony Shapland, “The technical ability and complexity of Gwenllian Llwyd’s film, which won her the Young Artist Scholarship, also stood out.
“Her film ‘Dirywiad a dadfeiliad’ layered scenes and acoustic elements, and the clear connection between her as a filmmaker and the places and people she is documenting showed an artist with a documentary maker’s eye.”
“One of the main influences on the project was attending my father’s prayer meetings,” said Gwenllian Llwyd. “As he was a minister, I went to some of the prayer meetings and realised that there were only two or three people in the services. I was shocked and wanted to draw the public’s attention to this change – the change to what used to be normal as people attended chapel services every Sunday and socialised together. This is disappearing slowly.
As well as following her father around his services to film and take photos, Gwenllian Llwyd studied the buildings and concentrated on the degenerated parts of the buildings. She also looked at the people coming to the chapel, their looks and their attendance.
“My main aim when making this film,” she says, “was to stress and catch the loss which is obvious in religious culture, and this has led to the decline of Welsh culture and the Welsh language in particular.”
‘Dirywiad and dadfeiliad’ can be seen in Y Lle Celf at the National Eisteddfod in Abergavenny.
Gwenllian Llwyd is now a student at the School of Art and Design at the Cardiff Metropolitan University. The film was created when she was studying a foundation course at Coleg Sir Gâr.
Y Lle Celf’s Open Exhibition is delivered in partnership with the Arts Council of Wales.