The Power of the Land: The Welsh Landscape Gallery

WALDEN, Lionel (1862–1933)  
Steel Works, Cardiff at Night  
oil on canvas  
given by the artist, 1920  
NMW A 2245

WILSON, Richard (1714–1782)

Why are artists continually inspired by the land? What is special to Wales that has drawn so many artists here?

This gallery is dedicated to artists’ responses to the landscape of Wales, highlighting significant places, themes and individuals in the development of Welsh landscape painting. The display puts artists from different eras side by side to show how places have inspired them in different ways.

The sublime mountains and lakes of the north, the castles, the winding coast line, the rolling hills and fiery industry of the south, the meandering waters of the River Wye – these have long been the source of artistic inspiration.

From the eighteenth century artists began to explore Wales in unprecedented numbers. Today Wales is still attracting artists, re-interpreting the places and paintings of the past, looking at the land in new ways and bringing modern concerns to the eternal yet ever-changing landscape.

Famous beauty spots are depicted; but artists have also found inspiration in locations off the tourist route in Wales’s industrial and urban land. Some artists shown here are native to Wales, while others visited as tourists, found inspiration and even settled here.