Tag Archives: festival

Discover and rediscover Ilfracombe through the art of Ilfra-Expo

I was lucky to be invited to the launch of Ilfra-Expo on Sunday 14 July 2013 for a whistle-stop tour of the art installations around Ilfracombe. It made so much of an impact that today we took the day off to go round again at a slower pace.

Richt street art | Ilfra-Expo Ilfracombe Art FestivalLike many people, I’m often rushing about from one meeting or activity to the next, sometimes too pre-occupied with what’s next on my schedule to notice and appreciate the ordinary environment.

Ilfra-Expo changes this.

By creating a trail around the town, it starts at the Info Hub in Ilfracombe High Street, where we saw Jonathan Powell’s When We Build Again vision of the future constructed from derelict remains plus Nick Davies’ PsychoGeogging video tour round Ilfracombe.

We progressed along the High Street to the Royal Mail building (formerly the Post Office) to view Sam Aldridge’s Two Circles, a scale version of a Barbara Hepworth sculpture made with cardboard. It reminded us what a spacious building this is and makes you ask why it is not still a Post Office?

Next, Betony May’s Imprint in the window of Hairport, based on old postcards of Ilfracombe. View it in the day and then at night to see different aspects.

On down Fore Street to see Richt‘s marvellous decoration of the courtyard which has transformed this area. More, please!

After the End by Erin Rickard | Ilfra-Expo Ilfracombe art festivalOn Sunday I visited the RNLI Lifeboat House to view Erin Rickard’s video installation, Work in Progress, focusing on the horizon towards Wales and the view back to Ilfracombe. Opening is limited, but it is well worth a visit, not only for the installation but also to see the lifeboat up close and the displays in the Lifeboat House.

The interior of the RNLI Shop in Broad Street is a masterpiece in itself and Gemma Copp’s video installation Rising Tides explores escapism and the obstacles that hold us back from escaping.

On up to St Nicholas Chapel on Ilfracombe Quay, thought to be the oldest working lighthouse in the UK, and affording magnificent views of the harbour, town and Bristol Channel. Here Alex Duncan’s Water Fearing has created objects exploring our relationship with the sea.

A walk back along the quay and on to St Phillip’s and St James’ Church in St James Place. Adjacent to the altar lies Erin Rickard’s After the End, a memorial of personal significance to Erin.

Onwards to the Tourist Information Centre at the Landmark Theatre and the Memory Map, an interactive artwork sharing memories of Ilfracombe.

Outside Ilfracombe Museum are illustrations inspired by Ilfracombe’s tranquil beauty and Victorian heritage by Hannah Davies and Lianne Harrison. I could look at them for hours.

Finally, Sean Puleston’s triptych in Runnymede Gardens recalls William Blake’s ‘glorious Devon’ comment, for Ilfracombe is truly: Glorious.

As a resident of Ilfracombe for almost 10 years, Ilfra-Expo has opened up my eyes to the town to see things I have not yet discovered and re-examine those I take for granted. We have still to see several of the exhibits, but even so the trail has achieved what many have been striving to do: to create an experience that brings together all areas and aspects of the town: high street, Fore Street, harbour, quay, St James Place and the seafront. What is more remarkable is that the whole event has been created on a shoestring budget. This demonstrates that communities can often achieve more faster with volunteers than rooms full of officials in meeting after meeting.

Another spin-off for me was visiting new places to eat and drink. We all have our favourite restaurants and cafés, which we tend to stick to, but Ilfra-Expo created within us a feeling to explore, to try something new. Ilfracombe is lucky to be the restaurant capital of North Devon and even its modest cafés you can experience great food, which we did.

A massive thank you to Erin Rickard for having the vision and commitment to organise Ilfra-Expo and to her team of volunteers. I’ve been round most exhibits twice now and I hope to visit many again during the next two weeks. It is wonderful too that some exhibits are permanent, adding to the visual attraction of Ilfracombe even more.

There are plans to make Ilfra-Expo an annual event to attract even more artists to Ilfracombe. Yes, please.

With six art galleries in town and Damien Hirst’s Verity, Ilfra-Expo demonstrates that Ilfracombe is fast becoming the art capital of North Devon.

Visit ilfraexpo.co.uk for more details and visit my board on Pinterest for more photos.

Posted in a musing, Ilfracombe, robertz Ilfracombe reviews. Tagged with , , , , , , , , .

Celebrate the sea this September at SeaIlfracombe in North Devon

Ilfracombe in North Devon will be awash with maritime activities for all the family from Friday 10 to Sunday 12 September 2010 when the second SeaIlfracombe festival celebrates the town’s sea heritage from Iron Age origins to the present.

Offering an eclectic programme of some 40 events over three days, festival goers can sample gig rowing and kayaking in the sea, try out diving in the swimming pool, explore rockpools on secluded beaches, eat their way round the town on guided food trails and enjoy music, entertainment, films, exhibitions and more.

Packed into this small town are a working harbour with trawlers and its own wet fish shop, intimate beaches and coves, a varied selection of vibrant restaurants, bars and pubs, a museum, aquarium, theatre, lifeboat station and a high street filled with interesting, independent shops.

From morning to night during SeaIlfracombe, Ilfracombe’s Gig Club, Compass Club, Dive Club, H20 and Canoe Club, Sea Cadets, RNLI, churches, associations and residents will together host activities aimed at every age and interest. Whether you want to get physical rowing on the sea or prefer a more relaxed culinary tour, the thrill of spotting hidden wildlife or the chance to dance the night away, there is something for everyone.

Watch for Orcas from the height of Capstone Hill, carouse at the Pirate Ball, enjoy pirate fun at the Kiddies’ Disco or listen to performances by the town’s own LaLa Choir and Male Voice Choir as well as by international folk artist Heidi Talbot, backed by John McCasker and Boo Hewerdine, at the Landmark Theatre.

There will be floral exhibitions of the sea, art displays from the town’s college, the chance to explore the classic passenger ship MV Balmoral plus plenty of individual musical performances, street entertainers and opportunities to enjoy the best of North Devon food. From seafood landed in the harbour to a range of the finest local produce – not forgetting Devonshire cream teas and fish and chips – there is something to tickle everyone’s taste buds.

Information and booking

For details of the SeaIlfracombe programme, download the attached PDF brochure or see the events calendar below. Book many events from the North Devon Theatres box office on 01271 324242.

Visit www.seailfracombe.co.uk. Follow @VISITilfracombe on twitter and VISITilfracombe on facebook for details of events in Ilfracombe.

Visitors to Ilfracombe are offered a wide choice of accommodation, from luxury hotels to quality guest houses and bed and breakfasts to self catering cottages, holiday parks and caravan and camping sites. For a choice of accommodation in Ilfracombe, see visitilfracombe.co.uk or call Ilfracombe Tourist Information on 01271 863001.

Sea Ilfracombe 2010 events calendar
Date/Time Event Where Cost £
Friday 10 September
10.00 -16.00 Living Water Flower Festival St Philip & St James Church Donations
18.30 – 19.30 Gig Racing The Harbour Free
19.30 – 23.00 Pirate Ball Landmark Theatre £15.00
Saturday 11 September
10.00 -16.00 Living Water Flower Festival St Philip & St James Church Donations
including @ 3 pm LaLa Choir & Cream Tea St Philip & St James Church Donations
10.00 – 17.00 Wandering Musicians/Entertainers Harbour, Seafront &Town Free
10.00 – 11.30 Gig Rowing Tasters Harbour Slipway Free
11.30 – 17.00 Exhibitions Landmark Theatre Free
11.30 – 17.00 Ilfracombe Art College Display Landmark Theatre Free
10.00 – 16.00 Floral Exhibition of the Sea Emmanuel Church Donations
10.00 – 17.00 Moviebus Seafront Donations
10.30 – 15.00 Hostage Event Council Chambers N/A
10.30 – 12.30 Guided Coast Walk Torrs Meet @ Landmark £2.50
11.00 – 12.00 RNLI Display The Harbour Free
11.45 Historical Guided Food Trail Harbourmasters Office £5.00
12.00 – 15.00 Orca Watching Top of Capstone Hill Free
12.00 – 14.00 Dan the Fisherman Openair Tapas Seafront £5.00
12.15 – 14.00 Performance Platform – various Emmanuel Church Donations
12.15 Historical Guided Food Trail Harbourmasters Office £5.00
12.00 – 14.00 Music & BBQ Ilfracombe Yacht Club Free
12.00 – 14.00 Music Prince of Wales Free
12.00 – 14.000 Music Wellington Arms Free
12.30 – 14.30 Try a Dive Ilfracombe Swimming Pool Free
12.45 Historical Guided Food Trail Harbourmasters Office £5.00
13.15 Historical Guided Food Trail Harbourmasters Office £5.00
13.30 – 16.00 Rockpool Rambles Ilfracombe Aquarium £2.00
13.45 Historical Guided Food Trail Harbourmasters Office £5.00
14.00 – 16.00 Costumed Kiddies Pirate Fun Landmark Theatre Free
14.00 – 16.00 Face Painting Landmark Theatre £1.00
14.00 – 17.00 H2Outdoor Kayaking Tasters Harbour Slipway Free
16.15 – 17.15 MV Balmoral – Lookaboard The Harbour Free
18.00 – 20.00 S & P Tapas + Music & Wine Slipway £4.95
18.00 – 20.00 Kiddies Pirate Disco Age 5 – 12 Infants School £2.00
19.00 – Late Music + BBQ Ilfracombe Yacht Club Free
19.00 – Late Music Prince of Wales Free
19.00 – Late Music Wellington Arms Free
20.15 – late Heidi Talbot with John McCusker Landmark Theatre £14.50
& Boo Hewerdine
20.15 – late Ilfracombe Male Voice Choir Emmanuel Church £5.00
Sunday 12 September
10.00 – 17.00 Moviebus Seafront Donations
10.00 – 17.00 Exhibitions Landmark Theatre Free
10.00 – 12.30 Gig Rowing Tasters Harbour Slipway Free
10.00 – 16.00 Floral Exhibition of the Sea Emmanuel Church Donations
10.30 – 12.00 Coastal Photography Masterclass Meet @ Landmark £15.00
10.30 – 12.30 Guided Coast Walk Hele Landmark Theatre £2.50
12.00 – 16.00 Living Water Flower Festival St Philip & St James Church Donations
12.00 – 15.00 Orca Watching Top of Capstone Hill Free
14.00 – 17.00 Kayaking Tasters Harbour Slipway Free
14.45 – 17.15 MV Balmoral Atlantic Cruise The Harbour Tkts on Board
18.30 & 19.00 Restaurant Trails Meet At Tapas Bar Fore St £15.00
20.00 – 21.00 Songs of Praise of the Sea Emmanuel Church Free

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