"It was forty years ago today...": Locating the Early History of Performance Art in Wales 1965-1979

The project examines how performance art histories are constructed, paying particular attention to the development of the art form in the context of Wales. The project proposes to reveal this hitherto neglected aspect of performance art history by compiling as comprehensive a record as possible of events that were created in Wales by local and visiting artists between 1965 and 1979 in the form of a fully searchable online database of performance art events in Wales 1965-1979, which also indexes the current location of available documentation on these events; and a range of oral history recordings and transcripts, to be deposited in key archives. It will undertake extensive research into extant documentary material held in institutional archives and scattered across the private collections of artists and organisations. Complementing this research, the project will draw on oral history approaches to solicit the recollections of key figures who shaped the development of performance art in Wales during this period, a generation that is slowly disappearing.


Principal investigator
Dr Heike Roms
Principal project staff
Heike Roms, Rebecca Edwards
Start date
Wednesday, April 1, 2009
Completion date
Tuesday, March 1, 2011
Source material
Sources have been collected by the researchers from various public archives (including the National Arts Education Archive, West Glamorgan Archive, Glamorgan Record Office, British Library, National Library of Wales), and a number of private archives that have not previously been open to researchers. We have taken digital copies of photographs, slides, negatives, notes, scripts and ephemera. All of this material is logged on our online, searchable database available on our web page.