After completing a degree in Geography and teaching briefly in schools Simon trained as a Dancer at the Laban Centre London in the early ‘90’s. He danced for a number of choreographers in the UK, Europe and USA , including Rosemary Lee, before beginning to develop his own work in galleries and public spaces. In 1994 he returned to Wales, where his practice has been profoundly- shaped by living in a rural area. In 1998 he received the Bonnie Bird Award for Choreography.
Since 1999 he has developed a body of work from walking practices; his works are place- sensitive and he often invites members of the public to collaborate in a process of choreography, developing a process of making through the body and mediums of live performance, dance, sound and film.
Recent works include Dulais, a wade through a Welsh river with an electric guitar, In 2002 he walked to London from his home in west Wales along the old drovers roads. In the wake of foot and mouth disease 2mph revealed the quietude of a post agricultural Britain, and in part became a performed lament. In 2007 he devised the walking guide LOST IN LADYWOOD, commissioned by MADE, encouraging the public to get lost in inner city Birmingham.
He was visiting Artist at the Yorkshire Sculpture Park 2004-06, where he developed ‘walks to illuminate’, a series of nocturnal walks with the public, culminating in a solo gallery show of performance artifacts.
Over the last 20 years he has collaborated closely with Melbourne -based sound artist Barnaby Oliver. In 2009 they developed Pings, a year- long online performance project supported by an Artsadmin Bursary. In Louphole in 2010, an offsite Performance project at Oriel Davies Gallery in Newtown, Wales, they worked with the Newtown Silver Band.
Simon is a founder member of Wales- based itinerant artist collective ointment and in 2006 he produced the book WALKING TO WORK (publ. Shoeless), an anthology of selected work.
Simon is presently pursuing approaches to working within his immediate locality, bringing his practice home and developing ideas in conversation with his community and rural valley. In 2013 he received a Creative Wales Award from the Arts Council of Wales and subsequently developed a micro festival of dance and live art in his village. Maynard, come home happened in May 2013 and showcased Simon’s recent solo work alongside a curated festival of live performance, dance and film from invited dance artists. Simon co -curated a second festival in May 2014, Bodies in Land was an International Dance film Festival in a small rural village. In May 2015 the Festival ‘The Family Dances’ took place, involving performances, workshops, films and dances examining the ways dance artists work with communities and generations.
Simon will be developing his solo dance work Studies for Maynard in Spring 2015 and showing in galleries in Wales later in the autumn.
He is currently developing another piece of work Calling Tree, in collaboration with choreographer Rosemary Lee, sound by Barnaby Oliver. Co-produced by Migrations festival, the work first took place in a large Oak tree in Betws y Coed in August 2014. The project received a Jerwood Research Award for Choreography and will be developed in an Urban context in summer 2016.
He is currently leading an architecture/ dance research project CLEAR CUT with National Theatre Wales. This will focus on designing and building low impact performance spaces in Welsh forest plantations.
Simon is an Associate Creative Fellow in Performance Studies at Aberystwyth University.
He lives with his partner and children in Abercych, North Pembrokeshire.