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Triennial artists commissioned for Gasworks site

The fifth edition of Creative Folkestone Triennial will present around 20 newly commissioned site-specific artworks by internationally acclaimed artists, inviting you to explore the town and its urban tales. Dates have now been confirmed, with the Triennial running from Thursday 22 July – Tuesday 2 November 2021.

Curated for the third time by Lewis Biggs, the Triennial, entitled The Plot, invites visitors to consider urban myths and their relation to verifiable realities: the gap between the story and the actuality.

The Plot uses three historic Folkestone narratives as a point of departure: St Eanswythe’s watercourse; the physician William Harvey’s discovery of the circulation of the blood; and Folkestone’s industrial road ‘The Milky Way’. Referring to passages of movement – the movement of water, blood and goods – the exhibition will present artworks in public spaces across the town, along the various routes associated with these stories. By borrowing from, or lending to, existing narratives, the exhibition, though set in Folkestone, raises questions around the universal need to distinguish reality from myth; encouraging viewers to question the gap between fact and fiction, and what ‘place-making’ really means

Folkestone Gasworks – past and future

After researching the Ship Street Gasworks site, Jacqueline Donachie (b. 1969, UK) was inspired by the social club that remained on the derelict site long after it ceased production and the stories unearthed through the Pioneering Places Memory Cafe. Titled Sunday Morning, Donachie’s contribution to the Triennial will be a sculpture that celebrates the dance floors of Folkestone; as well as a film documenting a line dance indigenous to Glasgow called The Slosh.

Jacqueline Poncelet (b. 1947, Belgium) will create Looking Ahead. Piercing the retaining wall of the old Ship Street Gasworks site, she will insert a variety of lenses including those which mimic bee-eyes and mechanically operated kaleidoscopes. Passers-by will be invited to peer into the site and beyond – towards the railway viaduct, the hills, and the future. 

Morag Myerscough (b. 1963, England) is designing a gateway or ‘welcome pavilion’ for the former gasworks site at Ship Street, from where visitors will be able to view the entire site and imagine how it might be developed in future. A dominant theme in her work is the ‘sense of belonging’ and her ambition is to ‘make happy those who are near and those who are far will come’. Building on both the Pioneering Places Memory Cafe project with the local community, Morag is working to develop her designs with local residents, who have been excluded from the neighbouring gasworks site for two generations.

For a full list of all the artists commissioned and to stay up-to-date with the Creative Folkestone Triennial, please visit the official site and follow on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. #ThePlot

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