Daniel Trivedy is a multi-disciplinary visual artist of Indian descent based in Swansea. In addition to being a practising artist, Daniel works as a Project Lead for the Arts Council of Wales and as a lecturer on the Art and Design Foundation course at Coleg Sir Gar.
The Welsh Emergency Blankets act as a platform, bringing two seemingly disparate conversations together. Daniel designed the blankets to promote a more inclusive environment, aiming to reconcile conversations around nationhood and those seeking sanctuary.
Fundamentally, I am interested in the stories that surround us as a society. In particular, I am interested in those narratives that bring us closer together and give us a greater sense of belonging. My art practice explores our psychological relationship to each other and considers the origins, ramifications and consequences of these.
In 2015, I visited the migrant camp in Calais known as the Jungle. The first hand stories I heard from individuals stood in stark contrast to the dehumanising language surrounding migrants I had seen in much of the UK media. It was the first time that remote geo-political conversations had resonated with me to such a profound level.
I feel we are fortunate in Wales to be able to approach matters differently to other parts of the UK. I am reassured by the vision of Wales as a Nation of Sanctuary and the Well-being of Future Generations Act. The Welsh Emergency Blankets were designed as a platform, to stimulate a more inclusive conversation, and to eradicate simple binaries such as ‘us’ and ‘them’. How can we simultaneously draw on the strength of our culture while extending a hand to those in need?
As an educator, I have always understood the power of the arts and education to transform lives. At the Arts Council of Wales I am fortunate enough to lead on a programme called Cynefin: culturally and ethnically diverse Wales. This programme places diverse creative professionals into schools to help them explore the history and development of Wales as a culturally diverse society and allows learners the opportunity to explore their identity in relation to growing up in contemporary Wales.
This year I will also be working on a new partnership between the Arts Council of Wales and Amgueddfa Cymru called Perspective(s): Bringing our stories together. As part of this initiative, Creative Professionals from diverse backgrounds will work alongside community members to act as agents of change. The programme aims to build an arts and heritage sector that is fairer, more equal and accurately reflects the cultural and ethnic diversity of Wales.