My walk this week is not in a natural environment but instead it is around the Glynn Vivian Art Gallery and Museum – unless you consider our need for creativity a part of nature, which I do! It is an essential part of our existence that we observe the things around us and it is a part of my own particular nature to enjoy observing what we call art, and also on this occasion, architecture and design.
The architecture of the original building is formal, balanced, symmetrical. The newer wing is made in concrete and the even newer entrance is largely glass. This is perhaps fitting as the building opposite also has a new glass extension as entrance to Swansea College of Art and the original design of this building reflects that of the Glynn Vivian.
I enjoy the balance and symmetry of the old buildings and the embellishments in their design, but I also enjoy the more abstract aspects of the new – the patterns of reflections and transparency. Glass has the advantage of allowing the outside in, giving us essential natural light in what would otherwise be a totally enclosed space. Many galleries are of course totally enclosed spaces, but in these, perhaps our imaginations are prompted to explore other spaces through the artworks we see, whether historical or modern.