Posted by Rachel Westall on 27 May 2021
The world-renowned Llangollen International Musical Eisteddfod (LIME) is calling out for people to help transform the landmark Llangollen Bridge into a giant work of art to launch this year's festival.
The Eisteddfod has commissioned internationally renowned artist Luke Jerram to create the new artwork. He plans to wrap the 60 metre-long bridge in a giant patchwork reflecting the crafts and cultures of Wales alongside the festival's participating nations. Whilst the festival will mainly be held online this year, organisers hope the eye-catching Festival Bridge will also attract people to visit the town this summer.
Held in Llangollen every summer since 1947, the Eisteddfod is a truly international cultural festival with a world-class diverse programme that celebrates a message of international peace and friendship through singing, dancing and performance.
Luke Jerram's new bridge artwork will connect and extend the Eisteddfod's creativity out from the field where it is normally held each year into the town, transforming and animating Llangollen for the whole world to see.
The festival is offering anyone, from local residents in the area and fans of the Eisteddfod to the friends and families of people participating, the chance to get involved. They are asking for 1m x 1m fabric squares which will be stitched together into a giant patchwork and hung over the bridge. Ideally the patches should be bold in design, so the image stands out when seen from a distance.
People are asked to submit their patchwork by 30 June 2021 and to visit https://international-eisteddfod.co.uk/ for details, information and terms and conditions.
Creating an ever-changing artwork, depending on the angle, light and weather conditions, the bridge will become an incredible sight to view and visit and a powerful symbol connecting this year's online festival with its physical roots. Even the water below it will be transformed with the reflections and colours from the bridge.
Artist Luke Jerram, who is known for public art works around the world, said: "When I first saw Llangollen Bridge I fell in love with it. It's so iconic and at the heart of the town. Across the world, bridges have always been used as both a physical and symbolic way to connect people - which fits perfectly with the aims and ambitions of the Eisteddfod. I can't wait to see the patchworks the creative people from the local community send in, in order to turn the bridge into a work of art."
Betsan Moses, CEO Llangollen International Musical Eisteddfod (LIME) said: "The Eisteddfod has a long and rich history of working with different communities and nations across the world to bring people together to share their creativity and a message of peace. The community of Llangollen are so important to the festival, with hundreds of local people volunteering every year. So we hope that creating and sharing patchwork pieces for the bridge artwork will be a way of helping them to connect to the online festival this summer, as well as attracting visitors to the town."
Usually attracting over 4,000 performers from around the world and 35,000 visitors to Llangollen, this year's unique celebration of global peace and harmony will be largely held online in July 2021, with the main programme being presented over the weekend of the 9th - 11th July.
In keeping with the Eisteddfod's tradition of celebrating of the broadest possible range of musical genres from classical, opera and choral, to jazz, soul and rock, this year's online programme will continue to share the message of peace and connect with existing and new audiences in preparation for its physical return in 2022.