Cosmic Compost at Capel Y Graig Winter 2013 Louise Short



Often artists need just time and space to experiment. Searching for location to try out different ways of exhibiting a new work had proved to be quite a challenge here in Ceredigion. On hearing about the de-consecrated Capel y Graig, my attention had been caught. There’s a modest and unassuming aura about the place which has been restored, maintained and nurtured by a dedicated and passionate artist custodian.

Churches are where art could usually be found and more often made onsite, commissioned by the Church or its patrons. A place for worship (unlike a gallery white cube) is a context like no other. There’s nothing neutral about it. One may be tempted to rip out the pulpit and board over the window seats and stained glass windows. The Walcot Chapel in Bath sometimes gets ‘the white cube treatment’, always to the detriment of the experience, in my view. I first went there to see a new work by Jannis Kounellis a decade ago and I was taken aback by the interlocking aesthetic of the building and the work. Kounellis had the building sensitively restored and consequently understood that context means everything to a site based installation of this kind. More recently I saw Bedwyr Williams new work The Starry Messenger it the Ludoteca Santa Maria Ausiliatrice in Venice. The church and former convent presented Bedwyr with inspiration for the work which was both witty and yet not in the least profane.

The new work looked incredible in the Capel. I felt that somehow it had found its resting place. In order for the work to be shown elsewhere, I need to discover other ways to show the piece (which is proving to be difficult!) So the journey continues and my thanks goes to Avi who made this possible. I have discovered a comrade to whom I have great respect. I hope that we can work together again, perhaps in my artist led space STATION, in Bristol.

Artists who take on buildings for other artists to work in are a rare and wonderful sub species of the art world. This text is dedicated to Kim Fielding who ran an artists’ space, Tactile Bosch, in Cardiff, for many years, who sadly passed away last week.

Louise Short

Siriol Joyner

Gorffennaf 2013 July
A Sacred Arc of Seven Days
A Weddai I’th Dy o Arglwydd Byth

Gwlân yr Oen
Arogl gwlân
Arogl y caws ges i ginio
y flanced lwyd a Joseph Beuys yma gyda mi.
Blew du- arogl y ci- black dog
Deborah Hay’s “Lamb at the Altar”
Gwlân- Oen- Arogl

I lay on the ground
I lay on the blanket, the light on my belly
Light on my face.

The space feels symmetrical and brings me to the image of my own skull and its symmetry. Two ways in, two ways out.
constant wave a broken figure of eight.


My strategies for making are the space itself, blankets, tea, books, notebooks, objects.
Avi lends me ‘Always more than One” by Erin Manning.
We talk about language and ethics, dance making and perception.

“Cleave the notion of the body beyond the human. Connect it to all that co-combines
with it to create a movement of thought. Keep the movement of thought in the world (instead of putting it back in the body) and see what it can do. Consider this image: you are in the garden, your knees covered in mud, hands deep in the earth for an early spring planting. Instead of seeing the earth as a quality apart from the knee attached to a preexisting human form, see the knee-hand-earth as a worlding, a force of form, an operative ecology. See this ecology as an active technique for creating, for the bodying, a taste of spring. Instead of thinking the body as separate from the earth, as separate from the arrival of spring, see the ecology, knee-hand-earth in a spring planting as a technique for tuning the season.”

At one point I dance and begin to think about whether in dance, a technology and a technique might be the same thing.

Drawing Dancing Darllen Photos


Mae’r Capel yn fy nghofio- the Capel remembers me.

Gosod y gwrthrychau a’r blancedi mas:

Dancing and reading again.
sculpture and choreography
“I sing the body electric”
“Sometimes I speak of imagination as a force, an electricity or a medium, a place.”


III (i)

Arrive early and arrange the space
Playing with space and textures, making secret sculptures
Mae’n fore braf o haf. The space is still.

“Sometimes I am electrified by animals”
‘Dwi moyn gwisgo fy siaced Mekaisto a darllen am ychydig.


Solitude, surrender, practice, listening.

….Alignment is everywhere
….there is no one way alignment is everywhere looks or feels. .
….the whole body at once is the teacher
… doesn’t matter if it’s true or not. Just notice the feedback when you play it.

(Deborah Hay, “My Body, the Buddhist”)




Begin with the objects again.
Gosod, newid, chwarae, photos.

Y gwynt yn chwythu’r olwynion yn y ffenestri.
More movement to the Capel today.

Watch the hanging light bulbs, the yellow rings on the ceiling. The pink and the blue.
Constellations. Music of the spheres.

“Art is not purity: it is purification”
“Art is not liberty: it is liberation”
Clarice Lispektor

More object work without meaning to.
“My body engages in work”
“My body likes rest”
“I am alone in a canoe under a blue sky in Vermont. For the first time I experience breathing as a dialogue with all there is”
Deborah Hay




My Mother drops by to visit me in the space.
We note the stillness of the space, and the how the Capel is marked by the care and labour invested there over the years.
A Weddai I’th Dy o Arglwydd Byth.


VI (i)

Lladd gwair yn y cae gerllaw. Arogl melys heddiw.
A gift from Avi: “The engaged position is to run along the earth: – Andre’s lever 1966.

MY BODY LIKES REST (I like rest, not just my body)

I clean and clear the space, returning the Capel to how it looked when I arrived a week ago; it’s almost too far back to remember now. I sit with the Capel and write in my notebook. I enjoy watching the words appear on the page.

I follow my instinct here, in this place.

“A Romanian dog meets a French stick in a Welsh Chapel”.

— Diolch yn fawr Avi —