One of Cardiff's most well-known music venues has a new mural. As part of the cross-industry Get it Right Campaign, Clwb Ifor Bach has been gifted a futuristic painting of Welsh Music Prize winner Gwenno, a key part of Cardiff's current music scene.
The group commissioning the mural, Get it Right, aims to raise awareness of purchasing digital music from legitimate sites where artists can make money. With the recent growth of digital music there has been a shift from illegal download sites to streaming models which generate revenue through premium subscriptions and advertising.
Gwenno shared her views on digital music culture: ‘Whether something is given away for free or not should be down to the artist. It’s really important to get things from legitimate places so there's at least a bit more of a chance of reinvestment’.
The mural depicts Gwenno surrounding by a sci-fi dystopian future based on the cover of the book 'Y Dydd Olaf' by Owain Owain, the book which provided the title and concept to Gwenno’s prize-winning album of the same name.
At the launch of the mural we caught up with Gwenno who described her thoughts on the mural and her relationship with Clwb and the city: ‘Clwb obviously being the Welsh club, being a welsh speaker, is a massive part of my heritage and the city’s Welsh language heritage as well. It couldn’t have been a better building. I’m honoured. I was away for about seven years living in England and coming back I realised how much was going on. I romanticise the greyness of Cardiff. Musically I really like it. Cardiff has just about enough space to be creative in it.’
Mural designer Mark James is also a Cardiff-born artist who has returned to the city after working London. He was asked by Clwb to approach Cardiff Contemporary’s Ruth Cayford who connected him with the Get it Right campaign. For the mural Mark designed a digital collage of the image and handed it to artists who used spray paint to create it.
Mark shared his views on the mural: ‘Gwenno and the story behind the novel sort of fitted with Clwb and its history and the history of the Welsh language. It was an interesting idea in the novel that the Welsh language would save us. It was just inspiring’.
Mark also shared his views on the creativity community he has re-embraced within his home city: ‘I feel like I’m new to Cardiff in a way. There’s a lot of opportunities in Cardiff - it seems quite open to ideas. I work with film makers and musicians; I’m more likely to be hanging out with musicians than designers. You can actually talk to people - you might have some ridiculous ideas but at least they’ll listen. It seems like it’s open now.’
Mark is also working with National Theatre Wales and Gruff Rhys for the Candylion project which will be performed at the SWALEC cricket ground from 16 December.