About the Project
Hefin Jones’ project will ask the question “Is another rural Welsh future possible?“ Teenagers living in Britain are heading towards a future they didn’t choose. They are often too young to vote, often unheard, and tend to have changes imposed on them, rarely decided by them. Focusing on the social context generated by Britain leaving the European Union, I’r byd dyfodol / To the future world (IBD/TTFW) will explore rural post-work futures in the town of Cardigan, West Wales. Three industries hold the highest employment in Cardigan – construction, retail, and social care. These forms of work are all central to the identities, experiences, relationships, and ambitions of people living in the area, but what happens when you no longer have to work?
“up to 30% of UK jobs could potentially be at high risk of automation by the early 2030s”
— PWC, UK Economic Outlook, 2017
It’s through the lens of automation that IBD/TTFW will support teenagers in Cardigan to bypass the drudgery of Brexit, and collectively imagine more inclusive, empathetic, and emancipatory rural Welsh futures.
The residency will be grounded by an active research process and a short-programme of events, with the aim of developing ideas and formats for a large-scale IBD/TTFW project. The research process will involve working alongside different people that relate to the main industries in Cardigan, to understand how these forms work mediate local identities, experiences, relationships and ambitions. Structured through a series of events such as talks, film screenings, field visits, and workshops, the programme will focus on the opportunities and implications surrounding automation; providing the stimulus for young people to collectively imagine and demand alternative futures.
Grounding Hefin’s design practice is a process that involves understanding different people, cultures, materials, expertise, histories, industries, and infrastructures relevant to a site, then re-configuring knowledge generated through this process to speculate on alternative possibilities for the site. Foundational to this process is the emphasis on the designed object, scenario or performance, deriving from and returning to the context of concern i.e designed with, by, and for Cardigan. Living and working in Cardigan during the residency will allow for the development of this process and ideas central to the long-term plans for IBD/TTFW. Hefin is passionate about working in rural Wales, and this residency is an important part of this long-term commitment
NTW’s Located Residencies are supported by:.