Oriel Davies commissions Wales based artist Owen Griffiths for ambitious gardening project in Newtown

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Over the next eighteen months four new commissions, two artist residencies, and work on loan from national and international artists, private collectors and UK National and Regional collections will explore the powerful effect that flowers present within different arts practices.

Three newly commissioned works will be presented at the launch at Oriel Davies, Newtown 23 May, not least an offsite project by Swansea based artist Owen Griffiths.

For his project Becoming Garden; Dolerw park, Newtown Owen is working with a group of local volunteers, to transform a section of Dolerw Park into a space to encourage people to gather and as a site for biodiversity. Owen, and the volunteers, are actively creating a garden site within a public environment, liberating civic control through re-wilding and wildflower seeding (in partnership with Powys County Council). Some areas are seeded and nurtured, whilst others are left to go wild. These two approaches provide examples of our connection and disconnection with shared green landscapes surrounding us and invite us to consider these spaces as classrooms, alternative public spaces and to us as rhizomatic beings (where we learn and explore ideas without boundaries).

This ‘garden’, presents the opportunity for walkers and other users of the Dolerw Park to engage with the flora in new ways. Owen and Oriel Davies want to encourage people using the spaces in anyway they wish to – from dog walking to taking family picnics, from children playing to nature spotting. Alongside the everyday interaction, Owen is organsing a dedicated programme of discussions, radical thought and reading, organized by the artist and inspired by Robert Owen’s* legacy and the poetry and writing of struggle and the question of work.

Please contact Oriel Davies for the programme of activity or visit

If you are interested in volunteering with Owen, please see this article or contact Oriel Davies Reception on 01686 625041

* Newtown is the birthplace of 19th century social reformer, Robert Owen.

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