Tag Archives: murals

RIP Cardiff’s Millennium Walk graffiti wall

I’ve been writing a column for the wonderful Caught By The River project, and my latest piece for them was about the Millennium Walk graffiti wall, doomed by Cardiff’s impending UEFA Champions League football fest.

Where can you find existential ponderings about mathematical logic, sharing wall space with messages about Mother’s Day, paedo ring cover ups in the BBC, and a sketch of Marge Simpson with a massive spliff in her mouth? In other cities, perhaps this sort of thing is omnipresent, but in Cardiff, there’s only one place: on the banks of the River Taff, at the graffiti wall on Millennium Walk.

Read the full article and see the photos here: Wandering the River Taff: Millennium Walk and the Doomed Graffiti Wall

To be honest, it’s kind of amazing the graffiti wall has lasted as long as it has, given its PRIME LOCATION (and like the song says, dollar bill y’all, dollar dollar bill). It’s just a shame that seemingly every nice public space in the city has to celebrate alternative community has to be sacrificed for profit (see also: the Abacus, but hopefully NOT Womanby Street).

I just read this morning that a new space has been secured for the wall: in Callaghan Square, on the southern outskirts of the city. Oner Signs will still be co-ordinating, so if you’re desperate to paint please contact them rather than just rocking up and tagging!

If you’ve never heard of Callaghan Square, well, that’s because it’s basically just a bit of a strange nomansland of a place – a walkway across the middle of a massive roundabout that hugs the edge of the city between Butetown and the city centre (go to the north end of Bute Street – it’s there). Ie – a bit of a shit spot.

I know the artists will be happy they’ve been given somewhere by the council – anywhere is better than nowhere, after all. Graffiti is still a bit ‘cutting edge’ I guess for the majority of people who make planning decisions in the city (Cardiff council planning department – step forward and prove me wrong!), so I suppose just any space seems like enough in their eyes.

Callaghan Square is by no means a like-for-like location. Millennium Walk was a wonderful place, because it brought massive amounts of exposure for the artists and the art form itself to people who probably would never go and seek that out. And yes, the new space is used by skaters, so it’s nice in that sense, but it feels a bit like ghettoising the art form. Get it back in the centre! Make it visible!

How nice it was … to be able to amble down the river and enjoy (or be confused by – reactions are irrelevant guys, it’s ART) the murals on those walls.

Anyway, there have been a bunch of things published about the wall, so I thought I’d do a bit of a round up here:

If I’ve missed anything, please leave links to more pieces you’ve seen in the comments. And RIP this quirky, wonderful little segment of the beating heart of our city centre.

Photography by Lorna Cabble

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100 days in Cardiff – Cathedral Walk

We Are Cardiff contributor Jeremy Rees is recording his days in and around Cardiff with 100 photographs of local points of interest. We’ll be publishing some of them here on We Are Cardiff – and make sure you tune in to Jeremy as he presents the Saturday Soulful Breakfast on Radio Cardiff!

Cathedral Walk

Cathedral Walk

“This mural is really large – but is easily missed. It’s painted – rather incongruously – on a wall between The Metropolitan Cathedral Church of St David, and Minskys Showbar “providing live drag entertainment starring Tina Sparkle” (that’s Cardiff!) the mural is of a cliff with the sea crashing into it. Above the picture are the words ‘Union of Shop Distributive and Allied Workers’ who presumably occupied Minskys before Tina moved in. Quite what the picture depicted has to do with the Union is a mystery to me.”

 

Thanks Jeremy! Catch you next time…

100 days in Cardiff – De Gabay mural

We Are Cardiff contributor Jeremy Rees is recording his days in and around Cardiff with 100 photographs of local points of interest. We’ll be publishing some of them here on We Are Cardiff – and make sure you tune in to Jeremy as he presents the Saturday Soulful Breakfast on Radio Cardiff!

De Gabay mural

de gabay mural

“Another example of Cardiff street art today. This wall painting near Loudoun Square in Butetown is a lasting reminder of a day of performance & audience participation called ‘De Gabay’ (which means poem in Somali). It happened in March 2013 and was a collaboration between local writers and National Theatre Wales and it was themed on the unique multi-cultural heritage of the area. The audience found themselves unexpectedly participating in a parade, street theatre and story telling in people’s homes – not to mention taking part in a live broadcast of the radio soap ‘Sophia Square’. It was a huge undertaking and involved hundreds of local people – including me being a roving reporter (complete with trench coat) for an online TV station set up for the day to cover the event. Sadly the weather was not kind – it was very cold and there was a biting wind I remember – and that put a bit of a dampener on it, but it was still an unforgettable experience”

 

Thanks Jeremy! Catch you next time…

100 days in Cardiff – the art of zen

We Are Cardiff contributor Jeremy Rees is recording his days in and around Cardiff with 100 photographs of local points of interest. We’ll be publishing some of them here on We Are Cardiff – and make sure you tune in to Jeremy as he presents the Saturday Soulful Breakfast on Radio Cardiff!

The art of zen

the art of zen

“Thirty days into my challenge to record 100 days in pictures and I give you a piece of street art from a wall in Fitzhammon Close. A Zen meditation on the power of patience, which I dedicate to Jake Goddard”

 

Thanks Jeremy! Catch you next time…