Brecon in Bits: inspired by the street Summer 2022
New Curriculum Expressive Arts Project with Brecon High School
Brecon’s streetscape is the inspiration for the artwork in this exhibition. Drawing ideas from the buildings of Brecon and street art from across Wales, year ten pupils at Brecon High School experimented with stencilling and spray-painting processes to create a series of new artwork.
Working with local artist Ruth Gibbs and arts educator and curator Ruth Lloyd over a period of six weeks, the pupils explored the history of stencilling and street art: from early cave paintings, Italian graffito (scratching) to the work of contemporary street artists in Wales and across the World. They looked at how street art has been used in Wales for political protest and as site specific artwork in works including Cofiwch Dryweryn, Banksy’s Season’s Greetings and the work of Pure Evil (who has tagged a wall in Brecon).
Creating grafitti on buildings without permission is illegal and does not support artists in making a living so the group looked at how artists make work on paper or as clothing which is sold and collected by individuals, museums and galleries.
The pupils undertook visual research in the streets of Brecon, looking for inspiration in the architectural details of the built environment to create street-art-style stencils. They learned and practised new skills and techniques in the use of graffiti spray paint and created individual artworks on paper and on board to contribute to the display at Theatr Brycheiniog.
The display represents the creative journey of the pupils, sharing the stencil designs, testing, and experimenting with spray paint on card, and a selection of final artworks.
Some of the artwork in the display is now featured in a street-scape project in Brecon town centre. A series of banners displayed in the town has been commissioned by local business organisation Brecon Buzz working on a partnership initiative funded by Welsh Government