Sir Kyffin Williams

Sir Kyffin Williams was born in Anglesey, on 9 May 1918. After leaving school he served for the army but when discharged on account of his epilepsy he was advised by the military doctor to pursue art.  It was then in 1941 that Kyffin enrolled as a student at the Slade School of Art where he realised that the act of painting a picture was not just a matter of placing images on paper or canvas, but that love and mood were essential aspects of the creative process.  

After completing his education he worked part-time as a teacher for 29 years in London, using the rest of his time to focus on his paintings.  However, having reached the age of fifty, he was determined to accomplish something special.  In 1974 Kyffin returned to Anglesey, near the village of Llanfair Pwllgwyngyll where he immersed himself in the community, recording the people, the landscape, the birds and animals. Kyffin was in paradise, with the mountains of Snowdonia in front of him and the earth of his beloved Anglesey beneath his feet.  

Through his career, he lectured extensively on art throughout the country and gave every support to schools, welcoming countless classes into his home and studio in Pwllfanogl.  He was without doubt the figurehead of contemporary Welsh art.  He was considered as the first artist to truly connect with the people of Wales – a tribute to the authenticity of his artistic vision – but his reputation extended far beyond his own country.  Overhis career he received many awards and honours. He was a senior Royal Academician, in 1982 he received an OBE for his services to the arts and in 2000, he was given a knighthood. He died on Anglesey in 2006.