The Coal Face is a study of the Welsh coal industry seen through the physiognomies of the workforce.
The 3-d portrait installation is part of Diffusion 2019 – “Sound & Vision” and will exhibit in the Senedd (Welsh Assembly buidling, Cardiff Bay) and Shift (pop-up gallery), Capitol Shoppping Centre, Cardiff, during May.
Wales was once a world leader in coal production with over 600 collieries in South Wales alone. Today, all but a few traces of our recent history have been wiped away. The coal dust is gone. The mines demolished. Liquorice rivers run clear and the valleys are green. Scattered throughout the valley towns the workforce are in the shadows; older, wiser and growing infirm. The faces of these men are the key to our industrial past. Colliers from the Rhondda, The Rymney, The Taff and the Ebbw sat for the intense studio sessions required to create the full 3-d portraits, accompanied by recordings of their voices and a soundscape of environmental sounds and composition by BAFTA winning composer John Rea.