About Queen Street Gallery
Queen Street Gallery is a new art gallery which opened in Neath on the 16th June 2018. The gallery is situated at the top end of Queen Street, near the bus station and Victoria Gardens. It is a beautiful space, which showcases creative talent at its best. The program of exhibitions features art and design in various mediums: painting, printmaking, sculpture, ceramics, glass, textiles and jewellery.
The aim of the gallery is to support, exhibit and promote original and inspiring contemporary art and design by local and national established artists and designer makers in a changing programme of monthly exhibitions.
In keeping with its aim of promoting, celebrating and encouraging participation in the visual arts, the gallery hosts a variety of art and craft workshops, using techniques that range from Plein Air Painting classes at the Gnoll Country Park to learning a range of craft skills and design applications. The gallery shop also offers handmade items by established designers and makers. All in all the gallery offers excitement, variety and great quality to the locals of the Neath Valley and beyond!
Neath has a long and varied history
Neath was given its Fayre and Market Charter in 1280 and still holds a street and livestock market each September; it was called Nidum by the Romans who established a Roman fort and numerous marching camps on the surrounding hills; these hills also gave rise to the name of Nest or Nyth as Neath is nestled within them on the flat plain of the glacial valley; the picturesque Cistercian Abbey ruins, dissolved by Henry VIII, are easily reached along the towpath of the Tennant Canal; the canal network extends to Briton Ferry, Swansea and Aberdulais where the first copper smelting works have been renovated by the National Trust, the Norman castle, which gives rise to the Welsh name of Castell Nedd, and the Norman Church of St. Thomas are located in the centre of town.
The industrial heritage of Neath is apparent throughout the landscape; the canal network fell into disrepair when Isambard Kingdom Brunel brought the railways to the area and both systems were used to transport the vast amounts of coal and other minerals to the local ports. The remains of old mine workings and other industrial sites can be seen throughout the area. The industrial past which blighted our environment for so long has, ironically, left us a legacy of beauty and tranquillity: the vast estates of the coal-masters and industrialists are now country parks and the Gnoll Country Park, once the home of the Mackworth family, is a short walk from Neath Town Centre.The Vale of Neath is renowned for its great beauty and natural landscape. Its natural and industrial history has attracted well-known names such as J.M.W. Turner to paint many landscapes of the surrounding area. The time that the renowned naturalist,Alfred Russell Wallace, spent in the Vale of Neath in the early 20th Century inspired him to say that ‘I cannot call to mind a single valley that in the same extent of country comprises so much beautiful and picturesque scenery and so many interesting and specific features as the Vale of Neath’. Queen Street itself, named for Queen Victoria, leads from the green oasis of Victoria Gardens towards the indoor market. For over 150 years Neath has been associated with Rugby Union. Neath is one of the most influential towns in Welsh rugby history and Neath’s Castle Hotel was the birthplace of the Welsh Rugby Union.
The opening of Queen Street Gallery is the latest stage of Neath’s historical and cultural heritage; an art gallery in Neath, offering an unrivalled gallery experience, featuring local, national and international talent. In time, the gallery and our artists, exhibitions and events will rival our Rugby reputation as we intend to exhibit probably the best and largest collection of original contemporary art in South Wales. Our aim will always be to champion art for all; bigger, better and bolder than ever seen before and a warm welcome will always await you when you come to visit Queen Street Gallery.