The Singing Hills

Ed Brydon

Festival Exhibition : 9th – 21st October

Ed Brydon: The Singing Hills

Map Location 6:

Porth Eirias, The Promanade LL29 8HH 

 

It is said that a Welsh Prince, Madog, sailed to America in 1170, over three hundred years before Christopher Columbus. There is no evidence for this folklore tale, but in the Mohawk Valley of Central New York, there is a community of people descended from Welsh immigrants.

They settled in Remsen, a small town in Oneida County, and the surrounding area from the early 1800s onwards, driven to leave North Wales due to poverty, lack of work–in spite of the booming industrial revolution–and suppression of the Welsh heritage and language.

‘The Singing Hills’ draws references from Welsh myths and legends, including the tale of Madog as well as The Mabinogion. It draws a visual line of connection between the people, land, and life of Remsen and North Wales, their similarities and differences and the relationship of these proud people of Welsh heritage to their home in America and the land of their ancestral home in North Wales.

Ed continues photographing the people, land, and village life in Remsen and the surrounding area whilst doing the same in North Wales, and where possible photographing confirmed relatives of people he has photographed in Remsen.

The photographer, Ed Brydon, was born on the Welsh border in Chester, England, to a father from York and a mother from Dublin, Ireland. At the age of nine his family settled in Menai Bridge where he grew up and his parents still live.

Ed currently lives in Bedford Hills, in Westchester County, New York, with his wife and two sons. When they moved from Brooklyn they chose Westchester in particular because of the similarity of the landscape to North Wales–it felt like home.

 

‘The Singing Hills’ is available to view in the town between 9th-21st October and forms part of the free festival content available to all. 

A wind farm towers over a farm. Similarly to North Wales, wind farms like this one on the high plain in northern Oneida County are now a feature of the landscape © Ed Brydon

Dilys Cotton, nee Jones in her home in Remsen, New York © Ed Brydon

Dilys Griffiths, a cousin of Dilys Cotton, in a family home on Ynys Môn © Ed Brydon