Photo: David Garner with the Wakelin Award winning Politics Eclipsed by Economics © Bernard Mitchell.
Welsh artist David Garner has won the Glynn Vivian Art Gallery’s Richard and Rosemary Wakelin Purchase Award with his work Politics Eclipsed by Economics.
Winning the award, now in its fifth year, means that the selected work will be purchased for the permanent collection at the Glynn Vivian.
Politics Eclipsed by Economics is a reflection of the changing identity of former mining communities in the South Wales Valleys as multi-national companies invest in the areas opening up hi-tech manufacturing plants.
It is a large-scale work created on industrial tarpaulin. Assembled with discarded industrial gloves, jackets and overalls once used by minors and juxtaposed with found objects from the hi-tech industries, the artist has painted over the top in oils.
Photo: (detail) old circuit boards were used to represent the new industries founded in the former coal mining communities. © Bernard Mitchell.
It was selected to win by artist Ivor Davies who described it as a "polemical work which challenges the local effects of globalisation, questioning political decisions based on economic expediency".
The work was created at David’s studio at Pontllanfraith and he told the 24 Hour Museum where his inspiration came from.
"A lot of money was spent on bringing these companies to former coal mining communities and I thought it was an injustice really, yet there was no money to subsidise the coal industry like they do in Germany," he said.
Photo: Politics Eclipsed by Economics can now be seen in the Glynn Vivian Gallery's permenant collection. Courtesy of the Glynn Vivian Art Gallery.
The inaugural Wakelin award was presented in 2000 and was set up by the children of Richard and Rosemary Wakelin to honour their memory and support local arts. It is administered by Friends of the Glynn Vivian.
Gallery curator Jenni Spencer-Davies said: "The Richard and Rosemary Wakelin Award has enabled the Gallery to acquire many significant new works by artists in Wales for the collection."
"The award is truly supportive of artists working today, and the Gallery is deeply appreciative of the continuing generosity of the Wakelin family and the Friends of the Glynn Vivian."