Amazing art at Coastal Currents 2018

The bandstand by Morag Myerscough. Picture by Tina Morris
The bandstand by Morag Myerscough. Picture by Tina Morris

It’s only four weeks until the 2018 Coastal Currents festival in Hastings and St Leonards.

The month-long celebration of the arts features an incredible list of artists and curators as well as some amazing new commissions and one-off evening events.

Internationally acclaimed artist Becky Beasley, from St Leonards, is one of the new curators for this year’s festival. She will be showing her own work in the form of a brand new commission centred around the Trinity Triangle.

She will also hold an exhibition of her photography at Solaris gallery on Norman Road, St Leonards, from September 8-29, coinciding with her curated exhibition a few doors down at Project 78 with a show by Anne Parfitt.

Becky is also overseeing an evening at Borough Wines curated by Ben Urban and Billy Stanley as well as being In Conversation with Melanie Wilson on September 22.

Greig Burgoyne returns with two impactful and press-worthy curatorial gems; Emily Peasgood will create a brand new sound art commission especially for the cliff railway in Hastings old town and Doug Fishbone will bring his usual style, heavily influenced by the world of stand-up comedy, to the Kino Teatr. Doug will also perform live at the Stade Hall on September 12.

The first ever Coastal Currents Art Fair will run from September 2-13 with 45 selected artists work on sale at the Stade Hall.

The opening weekend will see artist Morag Myerscough bring her touring stage to Hastings where it will remain until September 9 housing all manner of interesting performances, including Eggtooth’s youth music project on September 1 and Ore Synthesizer Club on September 8, both a partnership with Stade Saturdays to bring free arts programming to the outdoors.

Caleb Madden returns for 2018 with a project housed in the Masonic Hall in St Leonards. A new work entitled Xenofuturism: Welcome to the Antivoid by the recently formed Antivoid Alliance, this large-scale sculptural intervention includes a live screening and cutting edge dance piece by Yumino Seki.

The outdoors is still a huge factor in Coastal Currents and this year there are several pieces in the balance with urban art firmly on the agenda.

Deborah Bowness, who primarily works in wallpaper and lives in St Leonards, joins the festival programme with her own piece of outdoor art.

ZEROH are on board too with another innovative new commission that works with augmented reality to create a month-long, interactive, mobile-phone-based series of fantastical interactions. Gatherings, pop ups and creatures appearing from physical markers, this project will be enrobed in a story written by Gareth E Rees as a prequel to the Moth Project.

The film programme changes focus with two new partnerships on the cards. Screen South will bring their Playback touring exhibition to the Shipwreck Museum and Chiara Ambrosia hosts an Hastings special of her much loved Light and Shadow Salon, usually based at the Horse Hospital in Bloomsbury.

Home Live Art bring a bumper curated programme, which kicks off with Chris Dobrowolski’s new commission, originally a part of Season for Change, a UK-wide programme of cultural responses celebrating the environment and inspiring urgent action on climate change.

Also for 2018 Home Live Art head up an incredible LGBTQ+ strand, which includes New Queers on the Block, a night in partnership with The Marlborough Theatre; Salty, a ‘queer performance’ party; Fantabulosa, which features Drag Queens and storytelling; and, as if that wasn’t enough, there is a salon event in a secret location featuring Florence Peake and Catherine Hoffman.

Always the lifeblood of this community arts festival, the Open Studios take place on the first two weekends (Sept 1-2 and Sept8-9), lighting up the town with trails and a plethora of affordable art.

Artist Beccy McCray will work with her Crafternoon Tea Club to create a procession leading people to the opening party on August 31.

More updates and project information can be found at coastalcurrents.org.uk.

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