An interview with Becky Beasley
By Jilliene Sellner
Artist and guest curator of this year’s Coastal Currents, Becky Beasley, describes her involvement with the festival with humble enthusiasm, excited both about her work and the opportunity to curate and collaborate with a group of outstanding artists and creatives. A graduate of Goldsmiths and The Royal College of Art, her central work for this year’s Coastal Currents was originally sparked by an old newspaper cutting sent to her by her dad, featuring The Seaweed Shop, 8 Trinity St, with “Your next project. Ha! Ha! Ha! Love, Dad” written underneath. An excavation of various archives relating to the building which is now home to record shop Wow and Flutter, revealed previous incarnations including as a Suffragette HQ and from 1882-1890 a curious florist specialising in seaweed and shells, “suitable for personal and Drawing-room adornment”.
Rockpool Outros by Ted Versicolour commissioned by Becky Beasley
The project aims to engage with the area of Trinity Triangle completely, to rediscover local spaces as has been done in Gotham Alley. Beasley explains that she “focuses into one world and make[s] visible previous manifestations; the living and the dead and how we live with each other.”
The original plan was to create an awning for Wow and Flutter, based on Beasley’s accumulated local history research, but planning permission for this temporary work of art was too slow in coming from Hastings Borough Council, so she looked towards producing printed matter; a 12” vinyl pressing with insert. Working closely with designer, Sara de Bondt, the sleeve illustrates the planned awning and will contain the 3 track Rockpool Outros EP featuring music by Ted Versicolour (aka Nick Weekes of Warrior Squares), a remix of recordings of Romney Marsh sewer systems.
The unveiling of the work at Wow and Flutter on 13 September at 6:30pm will later, hopefully, channel the audience towards Borough Wines for Scalands curated by Goldsmiths graduate Ben Urban and Central Saint Martins graduate Billy Stanley from 8pm, for what Beasley describes as “the future of the complex landscape of identity,” adding that the event will be young, current and very relevant.
Solaris Print on Norman Road will host Beasley’s solo photo exhibition, Bouquets, a large body of work consisting of single annual shots of peonies on her dining table since 2007. Alex Drawbridge of Solaris and Beasley used the opportunity to work closely together on the prints which promise to be a quiet reflection of a personal domestic interior over a long period of time. Project 78 Gallery, also on Norman Road, will premiere Anne Parfitt’s much anticipated The Red Nightie “an exhibition of drawings and sculpture exploring both the motif of, and the meanings behind, a red nightdress belonging to the artist which she gave nurses to put on her mother after the latter died in May, and which she wore to the grave.” Both shows open at 6pm on 8 September.
Finally, Beasley will be in conversation on 22 September with award-winning, multidisciplinary performance maker Melanie Wilson, whose work Live Long and Die Out explores parenthood’s effect on the biosphere, at Opus Theatre on 29 September.
Both events are certain to be extraordinarily engaging.
• All details of exhibitions and events can be found at www.coastalcurrents.org.uk
or in one of the programmes available in shops around town.
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