An interview with an artist – Gary Francis

Tell me about your work in Swansea Museum.

I have 5 pieces of work on exhibit in the museum. These paintings are done in various mediums oil, gouache, and pencil.

Portraiture is my main interest although I am interested in a wide variety of subjects. The Exhibition is on until Christmas.

Tell me about your work? What are you currently working on? How is this different from past projects?

I am working towards my final exhibition at college and particularly looking at a self portraiture.

 Why did you decide to become an artist?

Because it is something I’ve always enjoyed and has been something I’ve done since a very early age.

 What was the best advice given to you as an artist? 

To paint what you see and not what think you see.

 Many artists struggle to find ways to sell their art.  How do you sell your work?  How do you market yourself?

I’m only just starting off in this field. I hope to get a website in the future to publicise my work and hopefully find a gallery that would promote my work.

 Who are some of the Swansea / Welsh / UK / Worldwide artists you enjoy? 

Always admired the impressionists and Rembrandt

 If I were to follow you around to see art in Wales/ UK, which places would we go? What would we see?

The Tate, National portrait gallery and the Cork St. galleries in London

 Do you have any exhibits to promote in the near future?

The final exhibition at the Swansea Metropolitan University.

Want to find out more about Gary and his work? If you any questions or queries, then please don’t hesitate in leaving a comment and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible. 

Artist Gary Francis at Swansea Museum

Artist Gary Francis

Come and see the awesome artwork of Gary Francis now on display in the Long Gallery at Swansea Museum. Gary is a Swansea based artist currently in his final year at Swansea Metropolitan University studying Fine Art. He works in a range of medium.

You Should Ask Wallace…

There’s another public performance of Theatr Na Nog’s excellent ‘You Should Ask Wallace’ taking place at Swansea Museum on Saturday 26 October at 1pm. Call the museum on 01792 653763 to book your place.

You Should Ask Wallace at Swansea Museum

You Should Ask Wallace by Theatr Na NogAs part of our Alfred Russel Wallace exhibition – Wallace: Evolution’s Forgotten Father at the museum, Theatr Na Nog invite you to meet the man himself in two special performances of their production You Should Ask Wallace.

The first takes this Saturday 18 October at 1PM with another performance the following Saturday 26 October at 1PM.

The performances take place at the museum and are FREE but prior booking is necessary – 01792 653763

Christine Jones at the Swansea Studios Exhibition

Christine Jones CeramicsChristine Jones is a ceramicist based in Swansea. Her first solo exhibition entitled Clay Circles was at Mission Gallery in 1985.

“Clay is primary, itself magical in it’s transformation from soft clay to hard ceramic. The material, the technique of coiling and form are central. The colour, light and space of the coastline of Wales are my inspiration and passion.

I hope the vessels convey a sense of space and clarity, whilst still containing the energy and joy of making. It is my continuing aspiration to make vessels that have presence and spirit”.

The clay is coloured using stains and oxides. The vessel is built on a pinch pot base with two or three coils added each day, taking up to two or more weeks to complete. The distinctive forms and colours of her pieces are highly respected by both private and public collectors, nationally and internationally, including the National Museum of Wales, Cardiff, Sainsbury Collection, Norwich and the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York.

Christine Jones received the Gold medal for Craft and Design, National Eisteddfod of Wales 2000. In 2006, she received an Arts Council of Wales Creative Wales Award and represented Wales at SOFA Chicago, USA and participated in COLLECT, Saatchi Gallery, London in 2011.

The Swansea Studios Exhibition runs in Gallery One at Swansea Museum until September 29th.

Inside Welsh Homes Community Project

To coincide with the Inside Welsh Homes exhibition, we have been running a series of community workshops and museum visits with participants from Dragon Arts and Learning and Cyrenians Community Centre. These activities aimed to acknowledge and respond to a diverse range of living circumstances and explored themes based around home and living spaces.

Dragon Arts and Learning is based in the Hafod, Swansea and works with people who have experienced homelessness or social exclusion and who may have difficulty accessing mainstream education.

We commissioned textile artist Lisa Marie Evans to run a series of needlework workshops which were held at Dragon Arts and Learning. The participants had a chance to view samplers held in our collection on a visit to our Collections Centre. Using these as inspiration the participants went on to create there own embroidery and samplers that explored ideas and experiences relating to “home”.


Joan's needlework

Joan’s needlework

Here Joan describes the story behind her piece:


“I was born in Smethwick, West Midlands a short walk from West Bromwich Albion Football Ground where I worked on a Saturday until I came to live in Swansea 40 years ago. I thought I would stitch a part of the West Bromwich Albion Club badge to remind me of my roots.”

Everyone taking part in the workshops and visits was invited to the official launch of Inside Welsh Homes exhibition at Swansea Museum which was a great chance to celebrate the project with a traditional Welsh afternoon tea and see the samplers and needlework created by the group on display.

New Acquisitions on Display

 New Acquisitions on Display  Swansea Museum is always collecting new objects. Our ‘New Acquisitions’ display case shows just some of the exciting items we collected in 2012 and 2013.

A new acquisition is an object that has recently been added to the museum collection by either purchase or donation. All the objects we collect must relate to the history of the City and County of Swansea. When an object comes in for donation, we work closely with the donor to acquire as much information about its history. Who did it belong to? What was it used for? Why is it important to Swansea? This helps us to accurately tell the object’s story.

The objects on display in our New Acquisitions Case include bridal wear, whale bone and a Bonnie Tyler mask!

The objects will be on display until September 16 2013.

Inside Welsh Homes and The University of the Third Age

University-of-the-Third-Age Case (detail)The University of the Third Age (U3A) Research Group at the Museum has been volunteering since the 1990s.  We have helped with many projects and this year we were given the task of preparing an exhibition cabinet filled with objects from the collection which we felt were relevant to the theme of the exhibition.  We chose to illustrate the life of a woman in the home and picked objects such as sewing, knitting, ironing and hair care, which would mark the changes which had taken place in the minutiae of the home over the years.

We thoroughly enjoyed digging into the museum’s database of objects in store and deciding what we were going to use to illustrate our chosen theme.

Why do we do it? To keep our brains active; to share our diverse experience and to meet people who enjoy doing the same things.

Inside Welsh Homes – Now Open!

Come and see this fantastic new touring exhibition from the Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales offers a unique glimpse inside Welsh homes through time.

Swansea Museum opening times

Living room detail - Inside Welsh Homes

Here comes the 70s wallpaper!

for the Inside Welsh Homes exhibition opens on Tuesday 18th June…


1970s Wallpaper