In 1972 Garth Evans created a large-scale sculpture that was placed in The Hayes, Cardiff city centre for six months as part of the Peter Stuyvesant City Sculpture project, which saw 16 new works sited at the heart of eight cities across the UK. The project was a ground-breaking and significant chapter in the history of public art and social engagement.
Garth chose Cardiff as the location for his work as he had very strong family connections with Wales and his Welsh grandfather’s tales of his time as a miner were hugely influential in the sculpture’s form – evoking both a hammer-like tool and the image of a mine tunnel that was as black as coal.
“My mother grew up in the small mining village of Pencoed and my grandfather and my mother’s brothers were coal miners in the region. As a child, I spent summers in South Wales and I vividly remember listening to my uncles and other men talk of their lives underground, in the dark. I wanted to make something that I felt had a connection to the coal mining and steel making industries of South Wales.“
After the project, the sculpture was relocated to Leicestershire where it has remained hidden, neglected and unseen by the public ever since.
Following a successful crowdfunding campaign supported by Art Happens with Art Fund, the generous donations of the public have enabled us to carry out the specialist restoration that is so desperately needed.
In a unique project, we will now return the work to its original location, for six months, almost 50 years after it was first seen.
The sculpture will be installed in The Hayes and accessible to the public from the end of September.
FREE | AM DDIM