When I finished the monthly reeds photography at the end of 2010, I wanted to replace it with another project because I seem to work best with particular themes (and of course it gives me something to blog about apart from how untidy my studio is!).
I decided to focus on an area of Newport called Crindau, which is fairly close to Shaftesbury Park, where I photographed the reeds. It is an area which is, I think, under the Council’s spotlight for redevelopment – a new, huge Sainsburys was built on the derelict gasworks site last year and they have plans to built a marina on Crindau Pill, one of the inlets from the River Usk. Whether it will happen in this economic climate is anyone’s guess, but I decided that it would be a good plan to capture the area in photographs before it happens. There are a lot of derelict warehouses, as well as quite a few operational ones, there – it is a funny mix of residential and ex-industrial; lots of potential for distressed walls and arty rusted fences…
There’s a lot of up and down so you get great rooftop views.
And the odd bit of arty graffiti.
I love these old derelict factory buildings. Note the individual facades – none of your identikit shoeboxes here.
And you turn a corner, and a flight of steps beckons you….
To this street of Victorian terraces (can you see the Civic Centre tower on the horizon….
But then you turn another corner and, in the middle of all those little Victorian terraced houses is Crindau House, this longhouse dating from about the 1500s! I didn’t know of its existence until a few weeks ago when I came upon this plaque.
When it was built, this house would have been in the middle of countryside – right up till the 19th century, in fact. Now it’s enclosed by all these Victorian terraces, a secret medieval survivor.
I just read on the BBC news website that the dragons have all been returned to their den to get cleaned up ready for the final showing in the Kingsway shopping Centre and the auction later this month. Very sad to see them go!
There’s a brilliant audio slideshow here with lots of great photos and a commentary by the organiser of the project.
Anyway, here’s the last instalment of dragons (unless I find any stray ones on my camera memory card that I’ve forgotten about!).
This on is Flowerport by Deborah Wheeler, a local textile artist, on the top floor of Museum and Art Gallery. The circles are fabric with stitching.
Recycled Royston by Amy Fletcher is in the entrance to the Kingsway Centre car park. He has lots of colourful bottle tops stuck to him.
This is Phyco the Dragon by Lala Ward outside the back entrance to the Kingsway Centre
He has lots of fun multimedia elements like netting and organza – all those fun fabrics we love to use! I like the way his mouth foams!
A bit faint because of the way the sun was shining on it…The Vigour of Gwyn by Daniel Fowler, George Street, by George Street Furnishers
A mini dragon in the window of Gwent Picture Framing.
Eyesee by the Newport Young People’s Information Shop.
Inside Asda – Paint by Numbers dragon by Tom Brown. He has a box of chalks for people to colour him in.
Philatelic Relic – Shaun Featherstone on Mariner’s Green, watched over by the police station. There are lots of stamps stuck on him.
Do have a look at the audio slideshow – there are a lot of great close up shots from unusual angles.
Last week I suddenly realised I only had a couple of weeks to find the rest of the Superdragons in situ. They are all being brought together for a final viewing about the middle of this month, but it’s not the same as seeing them out and about. So over the last couple of days I’ve been photographing some of those I hadn’t seen before. And a few which have been relocated in more secure positions to prevent them being vandalised again.
Yesterday I went to Belle Vue Park. We used to live in the road running up the side of this park so I know it well – it is a lovely Victorian park on the side of a hill.
This dragon is called Amser and it is next to the cafe. The artist is Marianne Thomas.
There is a little mini dragon painted by Clytha School inside the cafe too:
This one is Highly Flammable – Stick is the artist who painted it.
The last one in Belle Vue Park (apart from Goldie Looking Dragon who was relocated to the cafe from Ridgeway) is Cenhinen Bedr by Danielle Mayer. It is the Gorsedd, the stone circle constructed by the Victorians when they landscaped the park.
Here he is in his setting. You can see the lovely trees in the park.
September has been frantic so far, especially this week. The good news is that I’ve managed to get screen printing! No photos yet but I’m pleased with what I’ve done so far.
So… here are a few more Superdragons.
This one is called Hope for the Youth by Anna Ozemoya.
It has been suggested that it should be renamed No Hope for the Youth, since its original location was by the canal. Thanks to the local youth, it ended up IN the canal, so now it has been relocated to the main shopping street. ** UPDATED: please see Anna’s comment on the true situation, thanks Anna ***
This one is called The People’s Dragon because its design was voted for by local people. It was outside the Civic Centre when I took this photo but it must be in for repairs because its plinth is empty at present.
That’s all I have at the moment in my camera. Job for next week: go and find some more! And September’s reeds….
Here are the superdragons by the Transporter Bridge. In case you haven’t come across a Transporter Bridge before, this page tells you about the one in Newport.
Newport’s has a platform to take cars and people across the river. It has just been reopened after several years being in disrepair.
This is the top level – you can walk up those steps and across the top on some bank holidays but I’ve never stomached it!
This dragon is called One Flew Under the Transporter Bridge and the artist is Anthony Davies. Those are two of my sons in the background with their young Spanish cousin, Pablo.
This one looks like it is covered with wrinkled silver foil (very effective) and it is called Reflections of Nature. The artist is Cerian Price.
I’m going to be at the Festival of Quilts from Thursday to Saturday – hope to see you there!
This dragon is upstairs in the museum and library building. It is the Light Emitting Dragon by Mark Graeme Lewis.
There are a couple of dragons in the Kingsway shopping centre. By the cafe, appropriately enough is Soup-A-Dragon by Thomas Price.
And on the way in is the Interactive LED Dragon in Kingsway Centre by Neal Evans.
There are a lot of Mini Dragons painted by schools (about 100 apparently) – don’t worry, I’m not going to subject you to all of them! Unless you beg me to…. This one is in Wilkinsons in the Kingsway Centre.
This one is in the main shopping street, Commercial Street, down by the Westgate. It is called Grymuso and Newport Womens Aid painted it.
This one is I’r Nefoedd by Gavin Rees Jones and it is just outside Newport market hall in High Street.
Continuing up High Street towards the railway station is Super City Dragon by Lucy Baker. I like how it has been surrounded by traffic cones!
The dragon outside the railway station is Cenhinen by Julie Page. I was getting tired by the time I took this so I didn’t cross the road to get a close up!