ich bin ein waliserPosted: July 17, 2013
Imagine. You’re strolling down the Kurfürstenstraße in Berlin (well, why not?). You turn into one of the galleries in the area. Then you see an exhibition about the connections between Nicaragua and Wales (of course). Perhaps you scratch your head less than the average Berliner.
Dan Rees, an artist from Swansea, lives and works in the German capital now. He had the idea for the exhibition after seeing a poster by the Merthyr Nicaragua Solidarity Group from the Eighties, in Cyfarthfa Museum in the town. The Merthyr group was one of twelve across Wales supporting Nicaragua at the time. It was one of the groups responsible for setting up the national Campaign in 1986.
Dan traveled to Nicaragua at the start of the year to collect images for his exhibition. He also visited the National Library in Wales to search in the Campaign’s archives there.
According to the exhibition (see here for more):
“Rees extends his on-going interest in Merthyr Tydfil and its legacy of labour organisation, post-industrial poverty and attendant issues of class and solidarity. Rees brings attention to how even during the painful years of deindustrialisation (with the last ironworks closing in 1987) Welsh organisers empathised with the struggles of Sandinista revolutionaries and worked to bring this into dialogue in their local community.”
Dan would like to bring the exhibition to Wales at some point. In the meantime, Dan has been getting a lot of attention for his show in the National Museum in Cardiff (see here). ‘Kelp’ is an attempt by Dan to ‘re-imagine’ Laverbread for the 21st Century, highly suitable for someone from Swansea, Laverbread capital of the World (for more, listen to an interview with Dan on Radio Wales here)