On Sunday July 8th the fuselage of a DC aeroplane landed on the promenade in Llandudno, the third destination of the wingless plane’s “flight” around Wales, having previously nested in Swansea and Ebbw Vale, it will reach its final destination in August when it comes into land at the National Eisteddfod of Wales which in 2012 occupies a former airfield in Llandow, Vale of Glamorgan.
The wreckage of the DC-9 plane was discovered by Spanish sculptor and designer Eduardo Cajal in a scrapyard, having crashed with no fatalities, Cajal decided to transform the fuselage into a mobile arts space, his artist/architect led collective Trashumante finally unveiled Avion at the international art fair ARCO in Madrid. In 2009 Marc Rees was selected to represent Wales in the UK-wide project Artists Taking the Lead as part of the London 2012 Cultural Olympiad. His winning proposal was to bring Avion from its home in Huesca, northern Spain to travel around Wales. Rees acting as the planes Captain became the temporary custodian of this extraordinary sculptural object, celebrating the twentieth anniversary of its conception with an international cultural exchange titled “Adain Avion”.
Alongside “Captain” Marc Rees were 6 Stewardesses – The AAA Troupe [Adain Avion Attendants] played beautifully by ‘Kitsch ‘n Sync Collective‘ and decked out in dresses designed by Melyn Tregwynt they performed routines around the plane, town and Mostyn Gallery creating a homage to the town’s theatrical entrepreneur Will Catlin who hired Pierrot groups and strategically placed them about town to publicise his shows. Will Catlin’s daughter Margot worked with dancer and choreographer Cai Tomos to develop a performance which took place on the site where Will once built her a roller skating rink.
Local Artists Nick Elphick, Tim Pugh and Wendy Couling staged exhibitions and workshops within the plane, and artists selected from the Helfa Gelf Open Studios Arts Trail took part in a sound and video installation. Aeroplane related films played on screens inside the fuselage and each morning the plane hosted a different fitness class.
The events, exhibitions and performances where all recorded and along with the footage from previous destinations will be edited to produce the planes ‘blackbox’ which will be presented by Marc Rees to the National History Museum at St.Fagans, Cardiff, where it will be archived in the Contemporary Folk Archive.