Image by/Llun gan Chubzang Tangbi

Wales: Overview of the Arts

By Jon Gower

The arts in Wales are vibrant, vital and varied, with practitioners who both respect the continuities of tradition and sharpen the cutting edge. The country is well provisioned with arts centres, galleries and theatre spaces and there’s a real sense of stuff going on, of this being a country where people want to make things, from house music to conceptual art, from high octane dance to serene verse.

The historian Dai Smith recently suggested that Wales is an old country becoming young and in many senses he’s right. There is the energy you find in a nation leaving to express itself even as it invents itself. The existence of the Welsh Assembly Government, the National Assembly for Wales and new civic institutions have generated energy, deepened self awareness and touchstoned new ambition.

Even a rapid fire survey artistic landscape in Wales reveals a country full of vibrancy and colour, populated by a passionate people who cherish creativity and encourage it. Collectively the arts allow us to say here we are, here are our marks and signs, our songs and stories. Listen to them awhile, look at what we have fashioned and composed, share with us, if you please our sense of things, our wonder at it all.

Please click on the links below for further information on the arts in Wales:

Music & Festivals
Visual Arts
Applied Arts
Performing Arts

Jon Gower
Jon Gower's latest novel 'Uncharted' is his tenth published work. It has been described by Jan Morris as as "astonishing" read, "unflagging and unfailingly inventive". A former BBC Wales arts and media correspondent, Jon lives in Cardiff with his wife and two daughters.

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