Cerys Thomas

Er Côf am Emily: Straeon ar sŵn y Gwynt
(In Memory of Emily: Stories on the Sound of the Wind)

Er Côf… Is a video installation documenting the site-specific performance I undertook at a derelict farmhouse in the village of Llanddeusant, Brecon. Having come across the building, I was struck by the thought of what had happened there; who had lived here, what had driven it into ruin, and how it had remained… untouched, despite the world around moving forward and developing. There was nothing around of note to remember any of the occupants, or what the outbuildings had been used for. I began to notice the ground, littered with bones of fallen animals, and I began to clear a space amidst nature’s debris. I wanted a semblance of order; something to make sense in this place where there was no explanation for its state, and something to remember it by, even if the memorial would, someday, be forgotten.

As I was constructing, ritualistically, this memorial, I was haunted by a whispered story of a little girl. I named her Emily; decided she had lived there, once. Had run around outside in a white dress and dirty farmer’s boots. I heard fragments of Emily’s story; I wanted to know more. I wanted to remember the people that lived here, once, even if I was making it up from the whispers of the wind. I wrote a memorial on pieces of slate that had fallen from the roof, and left them where they had fallen; momentarily stark against the ruins, but eventually to be absorbed by the changing climate, too.

About the Artist

Of course it’s happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it isn’t real?” ~ Albus Dumbledore

My work focuses on memory, and how fragments of it, though imaginary, often become encased in fact, creating a world where truth and reality are a slant told tale and fact and fiction are never autonomous. Through performance and prose, I explore life as a fictive narrative constructed of our own dreams and thoughts, and question reality: is it a personal construct, a perceived notion? How does awareness of a reality shape our interaction? My work is a culmination of trying to portray the second narrative that constantly flows through my mind.

I utilise text, and performative writing to try to align my interior space with that of the exterior; to try and explore and make sense of the non-space that I occupy within my mind, and the narratives that arise there.



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