Artist's Statement by CUROP Students
Our artwork is based on Strike for a Kingdom by Menna Gallie, a murder-mystery novel set in Cilhendre, a fictionalised version of Ystradgynlais, during the 1926 General Strike. The piece has attempted to represent Gallie’s layering of the fictional and historical upon the geographical. To represent these contextual layerings, and the different approaches to each, we have chosen to physically layer the historical, fictional and geographic context surrounding the novel upon one another. We have arranged these layers into the novel’s four main suspects. The top layers provide a profile of each suspect, including their motives, caricatures and location to plot the events of Gallie’s novel. The second layer groups both contemporary and historical images of Ystradgynlais to ground the novel within the geographical locations in which it is set. The bottom layer introduces the historical information from an array of national newspaper and their reports of the strike. This contextual layering forms a deep map, that enables the viewer to look at the information within its spatial context and view them all collectively, as Gallie presents them. Our art aims to provoke discussion between different perspectives rather than presenting a single statement.