Swansea residents are helping to mark the launch of Land Dialogues, a new project by artist Owen Griffiths and community groups which will reimagine the Glynn Vivian’s garden as a civic green space.
Community partner organisations in the city have been asked to grow sunflowers at home and bring one seedling back to the gallery to be part of the new garden. Each sunflower will be recorded with the name of the person who donated it.
The sunflowers seeds have been collected from GRAFT, a community garden at The National Waterfront Museum in Swansea. They were harvested from last year’s plants, which were harvested from the year before.
Artist Owen Griffiths said, “Sunflowers are easy to grow and have a range of benefits – they support biodiversity including important pollinators like bees, birds and insects, they can restore contaminated soil, and they can brighten up any outdoor space.
“While you’re planting these seeds, we invite you to think about how we can make our urban spaces greener, more accessible and collaborative, and more biodiverse and more multi-species friendly.
“This might be the first or the hundredth time you’ve planted a seed, but this small collective gesture acknowledges the work of the future each time we do it.”
Zoe Gealy, Community Engagement Co-ordinator, National Museums Wales said, “Seeds in the community was such a lovely part of the GRAFT project at The National Waterfront Museum during the first lockdown, so it seemed the perfect thing to repeat.
“We are so pleased to be partnered with the Glynn Vivian this year, and we are looking forward to seeing all of the sunflowers coming back to both gardens in Swansea city centre this summer.”
Karen MacKinnon, Glynn Vivian Art Gallery Curator said, “Glynn Vivian is delighted to be working with artist Owen Griffiths, the National Waterfront Museum and 14:18 Now on the Land Dialogues Project.
“It’s wonderful that so many individuals and communities are contributing to what is this first step; planting a seed, in order to create a useful civic garden space that can effect change for the better in the centre of the city.”
The sunflower seeds have been shared with a range of community organisations, charities and partners, including Swansea YMCA, Matt’s Café, CRISIS, Race Council Cymru, Ty Fforest food share, Morriston Tabernacle, Mixtup Swansea, GRAFT volunteers and Glynn Vivian’s community group participants.
Check the Glynn Vivian, National Waterfront Museum and GRAFT social media channels for updates.
Seedling drop-off days:
Glynn Vivian Art Gallery, Friday 21 May & Saturday 22 May, 10am – 2pm
National Waterfront Museum, Friday 28 May, 10am – 2pm
Artwork by Stevie MacKinnon-Smith
Land Dialogues is funded by 14-18 NOW, the UK’s arts programme for the First World War centenary, with support from the National Lottery Heritage Fund and the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport. It has been produced by Taliesin Arts Centre in partnership with the Glynn Vivian Art Gallery, Swansea Council and The National Waterfront Museum part of Amgueddfa Cymru, National Museum of Wales.