January will see a new exhibition open in Tŷ Pawb which takes a look at the history of Wrexham as a market town and the building’s place in its market heritage as a stepping stone to the future.
“We Can Only See Today” brings the market environment into the gallery spaces, through a brand new commission by Wakefield-based duo, Yoke. Many of the making processes will be on display throughout the duration of the show, as well as pieces of market history.
The exhibition will look at how the new and the unknown become the old and the cherished; how change becomes the norm and the unknown becomes the loved. Change shows us that we can only catch a glimpse of the past or future and reminds us that we can only fully see today.
Influenced by an exploration of Wrexham’s market history and Tŷ Pawb’s current occupants, the exhibition delves into the stories and narratives of its evolution. From the travelling fairs through to its places today as culture and trade meet. Yoke’s work follows research and time spent in Wrexham in a bid to examine this unique culture/trade relationship and share ideas with the audience.
Yoke have an ongoing dialogue with traders at Tŷ Pawb about how they can contribute to We Can Only See Today.
Yoke is a collaboration between artists Annie Nelson and Chris Woodward. Their work is multi-disciplinary, using a wide variety of materials such as fabric, wood, ceramic and printed media to create sculpture, installation and intervention.
Yoke said: “We are really excited to be making a brand new exhibition that draws upon the rich history of Wrexham’s markets. We are currently busy designing the experience that audiences will have of markets in the gallery as artworks and those artworks existing as part of the markets after the exhibition.”
A ceremonial closing event for We Can Only See Today will take place with artworks being removed from the gallery and installed in the market area, such as fabric banners that will be installed in the wooden gaps of the market stalls and a brand new bell designed by Yoke to mark the start and end of each day in true market trade style.
Reflecting the nature of trade all visitors to the exhibition throughout its duration will receive a token that can be exchanged at the closing ceremony for a slice of red brick soap. These soaps will be sliced and packaged as part of the closing event.
Jo Marsh, Arts Lead for Wrexham County Borough Council and Artistic Director at Tŷ Pawb said: “We are pleased to be working with Yoke on We Can Only See Today. They will bring their vast experience to Tŷ Pawb. The exhibition will embrace the markets as part of a broader cultural offer and will be a starting point for further integration between arts and market as we progress with our programme of events and exhibitions.
We Can Only See Today is supported by Wrexham County Borough Council, Arts Council of Wales, Welsh Government and the National Lottery as part of Tŷ Pawb’s ongoing arts programme.
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