At an award ceremony on 10 March, the St David Awards were announced for 2016.
The winners were announced at a ceremony in the Senedd, Cardiff Bay by the First Minister of Wales, the Rt. Hon. Carwyn Jones AM. The award for culture, given to an individual or group in Wales who have excelled in the arts and other forms of cultural achievement, expressed in any art form, language or medium, was won by Owen Sheers, Professor in Creativity, Research Institute for Arts and Humanities, Swansea University.
Professor Sheers said:
'I'm honoured to have received the St David Award for Culture, and to have been nominated in the first place. I've been very fortunate over the past few years in being able to work with a series of innovative and supportive organisations and individuals, many of them based in Wales. I truly believe we're at a particularly interesting time for arts and culture in Wales - a time when the unexpected and the challenging is not only being embraced, but often executed to a world class degree while still maintaining strong links with local communities. I hope this will continue to be the case, and that the story-tellers, the makers and the artistic thinkers of the future will be allowed to flourish within our nation, while also being offered the necessary support to their work to the wider world.'
Owen Sheers is a novelist, poet, and playwright. He is the author of two collections of poetry, The Blue Book and Skirrid Hill and the award-winning verse drama Pink Mist, while his non-fiction includes The Dust Diaries and Calon: A Journey to the Heart of Welsh Rugby. Twice winner of Welsh book of the Year Owen has written several plays including The Passion, Mametz and The Two Worlds of Charlie F., winner of the Amnesty International Freedom of Expression Award. He has been a NYPL Cullman Fellow, Artist in Residence for the Welsh Rugby Union, and is an honorary life fellow of the IWA. His latest novel, I Saw A Man (Faber, 2015) has been published across Europe and North America and is longlisted for the Prix Femina.
The St David Awards annually recognise and celebrate the exceptional achievements of people in Wales. They acknowledge people who are making a real difference for this country – either at home or abroad. They are great marks of distinction and the highest accolades that Welsh Government confers on our citizens nationally.
The Awards reflect and promote the aspirations of Wales and its citizens to be a modern, vibrant country, with a growing reputation as a confident and clever nation valuing innovation, community spirit, and above all its people.
(Professor Sheers is pictured above with the Rt Hon Carwyn Jones AM. Image courtesy of The St David Awards.)
- Wednesday 16 March 2016 09.48 GMT
- Monday 21 March 2016 13.00 GMT
- RIAH, Swansea University