This film is part of Free

Island Artist

At home with Brenda Chamberlain. The artist/writer from Bangor lived on Bardsey 1947-62 and is filmed there by a regular visitor to the island.

Amateur film 1953 20 mins

From the collection of:

Logo for National Screen and Sound Archive of Wales


Edgar Ewart Pritchard, from Brownhills, Staffordshire, regularly visited Bardsey and here conveys an impression of the life lived there by artist/writer Brenda Chamberlain, from Bangor. In close proximity to the sea and the island’s farms, and with a broken marriage and WWII behind her, Brenda wrote and painted accompanied by two Siamese cats, a dog and a pony. She was awarded the gold medal for fine art at the National Eisteddfods in 1951 and 1953.

Edgar Ewart Pritchard (1898-1976) lived all his life with his younger brother in the house that their father, Thomas Pritchard, had had built before marriage to their mother Ellen. Edgar worked as an area surveyor for the National Coal Board but regularly escaped to Bardsey, an island he loved [see also his film ‘The Island in the Current’]. He won an Amateur Cine World Award (a silver camera) in 1954 for ‘Island Artist’. Brenda Irene Chamberlain (1912-71) lived on Bardsey from 1947 until 1962, after which time she moved to the Greek island of Hydra (1963-67) and then returned to Bangor. She suffered increasingly from depression and took her own life in 1971.