LOCWS International is an award-winning artist-led organisation that was established in 1999 by artists David Hastie and Tim Davies with the aim of making the arts more accessible to the public. Based in the City of Swansea, the organisation has developed a range of educational and participatory activities that enables members of the community to take part in and broaden their understanding of the arts.
Over 18 years the organisation has delivered its Art Across The City programme, which has built up an impressive archive of projects with the delivery of over 100 commissioned public artworks by a range of high profile internationally regarded artists for accessible public spaces across the city. ‘Art Across The City‘ is popular with the public and has considerably helped broaden the cultural profile of the City of Swansea bringing internationally regarded artists to Wales including Jeremy Deller, Bob & Roberta Smith RA, Olaf Breuning, Dorothy Cross and Bedwyr Williams along with many other contemporary artists. The programme makes very bold artistic statements and stands as one of the city’s most eye-catching and well-known cultural events, enabling local people and visitors to enjoy a broad range of stimulating contemporary art in an accessible and appealing way.
Our award-winning Arts Outreach and Learning Programme has enabled thousands of people from across the district to take part and learn about the arts in an open and accessible way. Our Locws Schools Artist in Residency Programme and wide range of educational public workshops have seen young people make their own artworks for public display and our collaborative working as a member of the ‘Swansea Creative Learning Partnership’ has enabled us to reach some of the most disadvantaged communities. Our outreach activities are seeing us working in partnership Communities First and Adult Learning Wales to support individuals living in the city’s most deprived communities to develop individual pathways into formal learning and/or employment through developing and enhancing their inter-personal and employability skills. The success of the project to date is such that it is being cited as an exemplar within the Welsh Government’s Fusion Programme which aims to encourage and empower people to take an active part in the arts, culture and heritage. See also an evaluation report that includes our project for the Fusion Programme in its first pilot year in 2015-16 which has been acknowledged as making a real difference to people’s lives.
In 2014 LOCWS International received the ‘Lord Mayor’s Ambassador Award‘ in recognition of the organisation’s work with young people and was commended for its “wide reach across all communities”.
Over 18 years, LOCWS International‘s educational, public art and outreach learning programmes have significantly encouraged and empowered people of the region to take an active part in the arts and, with a key focus on accessibility and an evolving fresh approach, the organisation has challenged and educated the public, making arts and culture inclusive, enjoyable and accessible across communities.
With Support From
Arts Council Of Wales
City and County Of Swansea
Colwinston Charitable Trust
David & Christopher Lewis Foundation
© LOCWS International 2023