Merched Chwarel project working practice blog by Lindsey Colbourne, March 2019
I was sad as a child, when they filled in the sand quarry. Just up the road from our house, it was somehow separate from the world, and I loved it. Bulldozed flat, it turned into nothing but a boring, grassy field. So I laughed out loud with shock about 20 years later when I first saw Chwarel Dinorwig Quarry. It was love at first sight. The sheer scale and complexity of its holes, worked faces and tips, the colours and constructions resulting from the re-forming of an entire mountain. Brazen - yn blwmp ac yn blaen [which translates as “blurry and tight” on google translate, but I believe a better translation would be ‘bluntly, with no holds barred’: both seem good here].
These slate quarries – and Dinorwig in particular, for me - are totems of a place, in that rounded sense of place as a socio-cultural-economic-linguistic- environmental mash up. Or as Foucault might suggest, Heterotopias….. read more