Wednesday, 27 May 2015

Seaside Sensations


This piece of poetry found its naissance on a holiday to Cornwall and the beautiful coastal towns that skirt the Atlantic, St Ives and Padstow amongst them. Despite the hoards of tourists who flock there, from all over the world, this coastline still retains its natural beauty. It was clear to see why artists have been drawn to this opal coast where the sea, the sand and sky are transformed in a unique light and radiance that remains even as the sun disappears in the western sky.

A three-hour train ride or six hours on the road from London, does not seem to thwart the incomers. Vast numbers of empty cottages with plaques on their doors advertising their availability for rent, suggests that the population has changed and fishing is no longer the business for those who own these houses.

The sea for me is still the seaside, with buckets and spades, swimming in cold Atlantic water, getting scorched and sunburned, sand in your sandwiches and on your ice cream. Images of childhood flood the mind and transport you to another time and place.

Although I should not have been surprised by the preponderance of art galleries that there are in St Ives and Padstow, I was amazed that all these artists and gallerists could make a living, where supply far outstrips demand. But perhaps there is something for everyone and everyone trying to offer something different.

So against this backdrop and the high-end restaurants and galleries that now draw in the swelling crowds, I present to you my last contribution as student writer in residence to the Museum of Design in Plastics (MoDiP).

I wanted to play with verse. I wanted also to play with the discourse between function and form, art and design, around an object that has become my friend, a companion on my research journey, the plastic chair.

Finding an exhibition of YBA (Young British Artists) at a small but chic gallery in Padstow, my attention was drawn by a chair in the window. It was a chair of unexceptional design but transformed by its spin and splash of colours. It was by Damien Hirst.

Further along the street was an ice cream parlour, which also had chairs in the window. These were not by Damien Hirst.

‘Ice cream Parlour in Padstow’, Cornwall, May 2015, image by Kate Hall

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Damien Hirst ‘Beautiful Repeat Pleasure Spin Chair’, at The Drang Gallery, Padstow, Cornwall, May 2015, image by Kate Hall

Household gloss on beech, signed underneath. Price £10,000.00.

Made by Damien Hirst, commissioned from Jasper Morrison.

Product Details

  • Household gloss on beech
  • Other Criteria
  • 31 × 16 × 17 in
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Kate Hall (Student Writer in Residence)

Kate Hall is a Doctoral Student at the Arts University Bournemouth. She writes across a range of contexts and publishes her work online. She uses creative writing as her art practice and an anthology of creative writing will be part of her Doctoral output. With support links to the Museum of Design in Plastics, she will draw on objects from the collection to inform her work. The chair made of plastics will feature as the central object around which a literary narrative will be created alongside the critical component of the thesis.

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