Exhibition at Home

Exhibition at Home is our third gallery space. A place to showcase local artists and the exhibitions we have not been able to show in the museum at this time due to impact of the Coronavirus pandemic. During the museums temporary closure and beyond this will be where we show some of best artists, artisans and crafters from the Cynon Valley and beyond.

To get in touch about exhibiting in our Exhibition at Home programme get in touch by following this link here.

If you would like what we are doing share us on social media and if you can support us by making a donation to the Cynon Valley Museum.

Islwyn Thorne: Portraits of Aberdare

Islwyn Thorne is a local artist who has spent his life drawing many different individuals and groups he has encountered across the pubs in Aberdare.

His abstract depictions are created using an ink pen and paper that he precariously balances on his knee. His drawings are like snapshots of time and looking over them feels like the epitome of people watching. Each line of ink provides us with multiple stories about the local community.

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Rhondda Cynon Taf Photo Marathon 2021

Rhondda Cynon Taf Photo Marathon 2021 is an event that allows its participants to express creativity through Photography. In a 24-hour time frame, participants must capture and submit photographs in response to 12 different topics. 24 hours – 12 images. This event is not limited to professional photographers and encourages involvement of all capabilities. Participants are provided with the topics and can take photos of whatever they think corresponds to the topic. There is no wrong answer.

Betina Skovbro introduced the Photomarathon concept to Cardiff in the summer of 2004 and ran 11 very successful events. RCT Photomarathon was born in October 2019. It was originally planned for Spring 2020 but the Covid-19 pandemic forced the event to be postponed to the Summer of 2021.

We hope you enjoy the mixture of photography styles representing the Rhondda Cynon Taf!

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Rach Wellbeing: Worship in a Modern Context

This exhibition by Rach Wellbeing showcases sculptures produced with Parian porcelain and reclaimed materials to reflect the local communities’ perception of ‘Worship.’ Before COVID, Rach spent time interviewing and being with the local community residents from Aberdare and the surrounding area to explore ‘Worship’ in more depth. Some of the themes produced involved family and friends, nature and environment, pets, and community-based ceremonies.

On reflection, Rach realised that the pandemic only magnified these desires for connection of the community, which conventional worship would have usually supported and held.

This project was funded by Disability Arts Cymru and Arts Council Wales.

Please note: this exhibition is age-restricted due to some of the images and language used. You will be asked to enter your age.

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Cynon Valley and the Community in 2020

Photography exhibition produced by museum volunteers, Wendy Donavon and Geraint Lewis

This photography exhibition has been produced by volunteers from Cynon Valley Museum, Wendy Donovan and Geraint Lewis. The photography was produced by Wendy, who is also a member of the Aberdare Camera Club. Geraint is currently studying BA History and has been involved in many local community and history projects.

They reflect on the year 2020 in the Cynon Valley, how our lifestyle changed, and how the community came together once more.

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The Modern Face of Co-ops in Wales

Photography exhibition curated by Wales Co-operative Centre

This exhibition reflects the vibrant and dynamic co-operative movement which exists in Wales. Launched to coincide with the 250thanniversary of the birth of Robert Owen in Newtown, ‘The Modern Face of Co-ops in Wales‘ brings together the work of photographers whose images feature co-op businesses building a stronger, fairer, more co-operative nation.

Nine photographers have works included in the exhibition, including James Davies, Mike Dean, Keith Freeburn, Philip Griffiths, Natasha Hirst, and Patrick Olner.

The exhibition has been curated by Catherine Evans, Policy and Communications Manager at the Wales Co-operative Centre, who said: “Although he was born 250 years ago, Owen’s legacy is alive today, carried on by the 474 independent co-op businesses, including Trivallis, which currently exist in Wales, and the countless community groups which operate in accordance with values such as self-help, self-responsibility, democracy, equality, equity, and solidarity.

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Exhibition at Home: Kim Colebrook

Ceramic Art Inspired by the History and People of the South Wales Valleys

Kim Colebrook brings Ceramic Art to the Cynon Valley Museum Inspired by the History and People of the South Wales Valleys. From mirroring the geological layers which made the valleys what they are today to exploring the form of coal and the industry which defined so much of the the South Wales Valleys industrial history. Her work would lead her to winning in 2019 international Ceramics Festival Emerging Maker Award.

The prize being a residency in China – where she planned to explore the similarities and differences between Jingdezhen (the home of porcelain) and the coal industry of Wales, with the aim of creating an exhibition at Cynon Valley Museum called “Black Gold, White Gold” – exploring the important role that these two very different materials have played in the creation of the areas – so much that they are both valued and known as “Gold”

The trip hasn’t happened, but Kim is still hoping to have an exhibition at the Museum in 2022 – and she is now working on a new set of work, which will still be inspired by the coal and iron industries.

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The Healing Hand of Nature

Roy Carr

Bedlinog, a small Welsh village is surrounded by beautiful oak woodland. Photographer Roy Carr explores this special landscape and unique place it now has in his life. A place that he could spend his life “getting to know its intimate secrets as it changed with the weather, the seasons and the time of day” a place which brings Roy solace and refuge in a time of life when he needed it the most.

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Women And The Valleys In Lockdown

Women And The Valleys in Lockdown has been curated by Karin Mear to mark International Women’s Day 2021. The exhibition comprises twenty five pieces of work by artists who live in or have strong connections with the Cynon Valley and other Welsh Valleys.

The exhibition demonstrates the talent and creativity of Valleys Women, many of whom are professional artists but also some who have never shown their work and are still discovering their artistic voice.

Please note this exhibition may contain adult content, there is an age verification process to view the exhibition.

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A Shared Walk Group: Pulling Apart Together

A Shared Walk is a community of South Wales. The year 2020 was one of constant changing directions, readjustments and adaptations of plans and expectations for us all.  In response to 2020, a Shared Walk has created works that reflect the processes of 2020; letting go, breaking up, fragmenting, finding grief and unexpected joys as we took stock, reappraising, reassembling and reconnecting. These experiences, common to us as a group are, we believe, representative of our wider communities also. The works we have chosen to show are multi-layered and sometimes ambiguous – nothing is straightforward, nothing is certain.

Please note this exhibition may contain adult content, there is an age verification process to view the exhibition.

Seconds: Anna Brazier

NHS Heroes: By James Williams Jones

In this uncertain pause in which we find ourselves, the creative arts have helped comfort individuals, as well as inspiring paintings, drawings, books, music, film and so much more. Our lives have been effected in ways in which we never would have thought. In the epicentre of this fight to keep our country safe are the men and women of our beloved NHS. They are working tirelessly tackling coronavirus, in a bid to keep us safe. These portraits by artist James Williams Jones represent the many people who work for our NHS and captures the contributions of those who save our lives

Untitled: James Williams Jones

Neil Burridge: Exhibition at Home

Neil is a painter based in Tonyrefail, South Wales. For Neil painting is an existential endeavour, an act of purposeful uncertainty. Neil confronts representations of people and humble objects, during a period of societal unrest and decline.

Neil paints portraits and still life from observation, and develops them using indirect painting method in the studio. Indirect painting allows time and thought to shape the work, extending the the postponement of resolution in the work.

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Barbara Castle: Working Valleys

Working Valleys, is a celebration of the unique built landscape we have come to know and love. “The urban form of the Valleys grew out of the physical constraints of the place. Linear, narrow valley bottoms congested with pits, spoil, roads, canals and railways, meant that housing was squeezed into every available and ‘build-able’ inch of leftover space in the mad, Klondike-like rush to mine the coal. In Working Valleys, Barbara Castle explores this unique landscape through her artwork depicting the Valleys’ unique townscapes, landscapes and industrial heritage.

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Nos Galan Road Races: A Day In The Life

Since 1958 the Nos Galan Road Races have occurred in Mountain Ash on New Year’s Eve. However, this year the event will be a little different. Nos Galan will take place over the whole month of December, allowing participants to complete the 5km in their own time and post the results online.

To celebrate this year’s virtual Nos Galan, we have curated an online exhibition which will virtually take you through the day of the event. You can learn about the history, traditions, and structure of the event throughout the years through the objects in our collection.

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A Virtual Wild Walk Through Aberdare Park

Through the year Aberdare Park is home to many permanent residences who call the park their home. From the geese who call the lake their home to the butterfly and bees which pollinate our flowers and thrive in parts of the park left to flourish as nature intended, this park is full nature and most importantly life.

Join us on a virtual wild trail as we learn more about the natural side of Aberdare Park. Sit back and enjoy these splendid photographs whilst you read your way around the park.

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Criw Celf: Exhibition at Home

With the local lockdown coming into place we were sadly unable to host Criw Celf as we originally planned. However thanks to their work we are delighted to be bring to you a virtual tour our their amazing exhibition!

Due to Covid-19 the annual A2 Criw Celf Summer School became a two week online programme for 11 – 19 year olds with free creative workshops and resources in textiles, painting, illustration, drawing and printmaking

Here is a virtual exhibtion tour of the Artist’s work who taught on the Summer School this year.

Featuring the work of: Julia Bethan, Carl Chapple, Geraint Ross Evans, Claire Hiett, Cat Lewis, Alison Moger, Sophie Potter, Tomos Sparnon, Jacob Taylor and Haf Weighton

Hirwaun Library Art Group: Exhibition at Home

Hirwaun Library Art Group is a group of 14 artists who all come from the Cynon Valley. The members bring to the group a variety of life experiences in different occupations and family situations, but with a common interest in pursuing enjoyment from and improvement in art in its varied forms.

Throughout the last six months as the group experienced lockdown and the ongoing covid-19 pandemic, many of our members have taken inspiration from their gardens, the local landscape, their pets and the people around them. The group hopes their art can also inspire the general public to be more aware of the possibilities for art in their own local environments and to give art ago themselves

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The Welsh Group: Exhibition at Home

The Welsh Group | Y Grŵp Cymreig is a long-established group of professional artists. In 2020 the group was due to exhibit Across Two Valleys which was due to show at Cynon Valley Museum and Redhouse, Merthyr Tydfil.

The members responded to the theme and their interpretation of across two valleys is wide in its subject matter and depiction. Inspiration includes the legacy of heavy industry and Abernant Tunnel connecting the Cynon and Taff valleys and Aberdare and Merthyr Tydfil.

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Aberdare Camera Club: Dare Valley Country Park

With its oak woodlands, open moors, lakes, wildlife and numerous walking / cycling routes, over the past fifty years Dare Valley Country Park has become a sanctuary for walkers, cyclists, dog walkers, fishermen, hang gliders, whippet racing, historians, geologists, adventurers and so many more.

In this exhibition Aberdare Camera Club has captured a small part of what the park offers, its history, its wildlife, its geography and its people. Each day is different and each season brings a new canvas.

We hope this virtual ramble through the vistas of Dare Valley Country Park brings back happy memories and sites you will be able to see soon in person.

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Caitlin Flood-Molyneux: Exhibition at Home

Caitlin Flood-Molyneux’s presents her latest series “Going Away In Order To Return”. Flood-Molyneux’s work originates from her emotional state and experiences whilst travelling specifically focusing on aerial views of landscapes and cityscapes. Flood-Molyneux focuses on physically exploring different high points around the city, going to great lengths to create her abstract pieces.

Whilst travelling Flood-Molyneux makes various sketches and studies to capture forms and shapes which she later translates into her paintings where she uses an array of materials including oils, charcoal and more contemporary mediums such as spray paint to create different textures and layers in her work.

“Being high above I gain a further sense of depth and space into myself and the landscape which I carry through into the paintings.”

Storm: Catrin Flood

Jodie Neale: Exhibition at Home

Hirwaun based ceramicist Jodie Neale rediscovered her love for ceramic art after taking part in an evening pottery class. Working out of her studio in Hirwaun Jodie’s work is influenced by Bohemian, Moroccan and Polynesian art, whilst her love for animals and nature is revealed in much of her work also. Talking to Jodie you get a sense of her passion.

“I am endlessly in awe of the artistic process. I believe that pottery is the most tangible way to connect to earth’s raw materials and it grants me the opportunity to give life to form. My greatest challenge is to make pieces which are both comfortable and practical, giving the owner the opportunity to use their chosen artworks in everyday life. I am forever inspired by the words of ceramicist Beatrice Wood”

“There is a vibration around things made with the hands and love that no machine can copy” Beatrice Wood

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Roy Carr: A Year in Their Lives

Bedlinog based photographer Roy Carr spent a year documenting sheep farming in the Cynon Valley where he worked with three farms. He recorded key events in the farming year: lambing, shearing, hay making, ‘dipping’, selling and winter grazing, sensitively capturing the interaction between people and their animals.

There is an intimacy about his photographs which comes from the relationship he developed with the people. This gave him close access, providing an insight into the physical demands as they work in all weathers throughout the year.

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Aberdare Camera Club: Aberdare Park

During these times, not everyone can get to Aberdare Park. Thanks to Aberdare Camera Club we have been able to bring the park to you.

The aim was to capture the park through the full year highlighting its many guises as it welcomes the people of our community to enjoy nature, its history, its rich diverse activities and as a place to find peace. As we find our way through the Corid-19 crisis the park now represents an open space and is as important to our community as ever.

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Karin Mear: Coal Tips and Patty Tins

This exhibition shows the work of Karin Mear, an artist who not only uses paints, paper and canvas but also domestic items such as pie dishes and baking tins, in her work.

She explores several themes such as current life observations and memories of growing up in Aberdare with its coal tips, industrial heritage and family connections. Karin had a very strong bond with her grandmother and remembers being nursed by her, ‘Welsh style’ in a woollen shawl when poorly. Karin is drawn often to a recurrent theme of birds and their nests which she believes is a metaphor for this bond.

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Lee Shott: Exhibition at Home

Born in Aberdare and with an M.A in fine art, Lee Shott has exhibited throughout Wales. The exhibition consists of figurative and landscape paintings with expressive and immediate brush work which gives the work energy and life: the tactile and bold applications of paint make for diverse imagery that leads to an exciting exhibition.

Combining observations with diverse approaches to painting; Lee subjectively captures the contemporary culture of communities throughout South Wales. The work focuses on human interactions and the idiosyncrasies based on his participation in day-to-day life; from observing people and  his surroundings whether by going on day and night-time walks or commuting by public transport.

Lee Shott, Abandoned Car

Nigel Whitbread: Dragon Warriors Dreigiau Rufelwyr

Photographer Nigel Whitbread, brings to the Exhibition at Home programme, Dragons Warriors Dreigiau Rufelwyr. This exhibition takes us back to July 2019 when Wales’ hosted the Homeless World Cup.

The tournament saw more than 500 players representing over 50 countries travel to Cardiff to attend the week-long free festival of football which took place in Cardiff’s iconic Bute Park, right in the heart of the Welsh Capital. The images in this exhibition reflect the broad cross section of homeless people in South Wales and beyond, and desire to succeed in the face of isolation and challenges from the rest of society.

Nigel Whitbread, No.14, Dragon Warriors
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