New Exhibition Aims To Restore Reputation Of Lost Welsh Artist

An exhibition, entitled A Brief Flowering, will be held at Oriel Plas Glyn y Weddw from 20 March until 15 May 2016. It features the work of John Cyrlas Williams (1902-1965) who was once tipped as one of Wales’ most promising young painters. The son of a collier, he was born into a Welsh mining community in the United States. His father went on to become a mine owner, and the family moved to Porthcawl on the south coast of Wales.

John Cyrlas Williams career as an artist was all too short. In 1918, he went to train at the Newlyn School in Cornwall, before moving to France and Brittany. But by the age of 30 his painting career had been brought to an end by a mixture of alcoholism and the effects of suffering with bipolar disorder. After he stopped painting he spent the remainder of his life as a civil service clerk. His artwork had disappeared into obscurity by the time of his death at the age of 63 in 1965.

The new exhibition at Oriel Plas Glyn y Weddwin Llanbedrog, Pwllheli brings back the forgotten Welsh artist into public view. Much of his work would have been lost forever but for some 100 previously-unknown paintings being found in the attic of his family home. Art historian Peter Lord and Welsh painter Mike Jones worked to keep as much of the work together as possible after the paintings had arrived at a saleroom in Clydach following their discovery. 

Now these paintings, plus others from private collections, are brought together in the exhibition 'A Brief Flowereing' which runs from 20 March until 15 May 2016 with details online.

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