Thomas Goddard, an emerging artist from Cardiff, is in residence at Chapter Gallery's studio until September 2019.
Captivated by the daily conflict of joy and terror, Goddard pulls apart aspects of our lived experience in order to understand it better.
During his time at Chapter, Goddard is expanding upon his recent work, The Word of Mouse (Grok your cornea gumbo), which is part of Survey - a major touring exhibition by Jerwood Arts. Informed by his interest in the physiological impact of internet use and feelings of addiction, depression and alienation he will be creating further video and 2D works exploring the connection between digital and physical experiences.
My residency at Chapter’s Market House is providing a base for the variety projects I’m involved in. I’m perhaps not your ‘traditional’ artist (if that exists anymore?) which is to say, I’m not static and I don’t focus on a specific discipline. Rather, I’m led by ideas, work with different materials and processes dependent on the project, and spend much of my time engaging with people. I’ve always had lots of different jobs and that has meant that my head is compartmentalised and can switch from one thing to the other. As I get older, it has become harder but that’s the salt and pepper!
I’ve recently written and presented two performances - the first was for the a-n Assembly in Swansea organised by Jane Simpson to spur on artist-led activity in the city. The performance, at Glynn Vivian art gallery, was called The Battle of Ninian Park Revisited and looked at the relationship between art and football; their similarities, differences and what they could learn from each other (this includes more half time oranges at private views). The second performance was for g39, as the culmination of my library residency, which involved reviewing, cataloguing and making their DVD collection accessible online. It included multilayered narratives, combining actual, constructed and imagined realities into one moment. And I wore a DVD helmet.
I have another performance in the pipeline. Coinciding with Jerwood’s Survey exhibition travelling to Baltic, Gateshead (opening 6th July), I’m currently writing a performance that will be presented on the evening of Thursday 12 September at Baltic, all welcome! With my performances, the writing is quite important for me, I’m not a natural writer but I have things I really want to say. I look to test my audience, saying things that are unexpected or saying them in an unexpected way. All the performances are scripts with detailed conversations, different voices, characters and often costumes - the one for g39 even included a rap!
When I’m not trying to be Cardiff’s answer to Vanilla Ice, I produce Criw Celf; a programme where artists work with young people on visual art activities in Bridgend, Cardiff, Vale of Glamorgan, Rhondda Cynon Taf and Merthyr Tydfil. Recently, I commissioned a portrait pod for Criw Celf from carpenter Leanne Cameron which has been out at Tafwyl festival in Cardiff Castle with artists who teach on our scheme producing portraits for the public. Those artists included Jamie Cross, Carlota Nobrega, Ellie Young, Athena Jones, Nic Finch, Matt Joyce and Adeola Dewis. I’ve also been supporting this years Wales in Venice and artist Sean Edwards by leading their strategy and programme for engagement with young people in Wales which includes the production of a film with a group working with Criw Celf. Whilst filming, the young people got the opportunity to see behind the scenes, meet the artist and took a lead role in production including filming, sounding recording and editing.
Other current projects include work for the Forest of Dean Sculpture trust. Last year I ran an education project which included time in their archive researching the sculpture trail and culminated in walking tours and workshops with a range of groups. I am now working to co-create a sculpture play-kit with students at Wyedean school.
Finally(!) I’m really pleased to have been selected for the Mostyn Open this year - opening on Saturday 13th July, they’ll be showing my film The Word of Mouse (grok your cornea gumbo). Come along if you are in Llandudno and fancy dipping your toe in the sea or the digital mesh.
See you all soon,