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Pop in the Park

POP IN THE PARK is a series of large-scale, site-related, ephemeral art works taking place at Wicksteed Park, Kettering, from June to September 2021.

Pop in the Park presents international artist Susan Williams MRSS working in collaboration with Wicksteed Park as part of their National Lottery Heritage funded @Play project and local people, to create a stream of engaging art experiences including temporary installations, video and animation and online and onsite workshops throughout the summer as part of the Wicksteed Park Centenary Festival of Play. The project takes place throughout the park with an October exhibition in Wicksteed Park’s Learning Space and via dedicated social media.  This project is supported using public funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England.

Susan will be artist in residence throughout the summer, creating large-scale ‘pop-up’ art works that celebrate the park and its communities.  The project will develop a series of installations that appear and disappear throughout the park, mushrooming up, exciting different places and people, prompting discussion and engagement, evolving into an exciting series of art experiences.

Wicksteed Park’s Community and Heritage Manager Tracey Clarke and artist Susan Williams explored the potential of the park to make engaging artworks offering new experiences that reflected everyday lives.   Their aim was to engage as wide an audience as possible whilst focussing the important role Wicksteed has in the community.  “Wicksteed offers its beautiful landscape and entertainment facilities providing recreation, a meeting place, nature and wellbeing to the people of Kettering and beyond.  I want to make art that embraces these aspects, embraces the public and encourages conversations, particularly following the recent restrictions and isolation experienced by so many of us.  I often use everyday materials, shoes for example, that not only reflects the park’s heritage and history of Kettering but that also act as a bridge, using familiar objects in unusual ways to open conversations.”

The project aims to engage as many people as possible by offering a variety of art platforms with different appeal including installation, animation, video, community collaborations and onsite and online workshops.  The artworks will be developed, installed and filmed in full public view inviting conversations with visitors throughout and an exhibition documenting the project, community workshops and collaborations together with visitors comments will be presented in the project space located at the centre of the park’s historic heart during September.  Susan will be in the park most days: for exact times please see social media and park notices.

Kettering based artist Susan Williams is noted for her work with light, space and wind.  Her minimal interventions key into their surroundings energizing both the material and the space/surroundings.  Illusions such as floating and evanescence appear conjuring the magical and metaphysical: the many layered works transform into a meditation of time and place.  Tom Hackett, artist, writer and lecturer comments “Susan’s work is elegantly ephemeral but emphatically alive….. “

Susan Williams MRSS studied at the Royal Academy, London.  She has won national and international residencies including the Vermont Studio Center and Brush Creek Foundation for the Arts, Wyoming, USA.   She received a Membership Award to the Royal Society of Sculptors and has shown her work throughout the UK and abroad.  Exhibitions include lakeside installations in Toledo, Spain and Laugarvatn, Iceland and exhibiting with the Stadtmuseum, Germany and Geumgang Nature Art Biennial, Korea.

This project is supported using public funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England.

Susan is posting daily updates on Instagram of the location of her work

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