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A Collective Success at Open Clay

We had so much fun on Friday with Clayground Collective, creating a massive cityscape that stretched down Guildhall Street.

Inspired by the theme of Refuge – this year’s National Poetry Day word – Clayground Creative directors Duncan Hooson and Claire West led this creative learning project, highlighting some of Canterbury’s historic architecture and hidden spaces, and celebrating the migrating communities who made the contemporary city what it is today.

Ceramic students at Canterbury College recreated city landmarks in masterclass workshops with Duncan Hooson. Advised by tutor Luke Godfrey they created mini versions of Westgate tower, St Georges Clock tower, Canterbury Cathedral, St Andrew’s Church, parts of the city wall and the Monument in Dane John Mound (see if you can spot them all in our pictures!). Frames were built and set out in Guildhall Street for visitors to add their clay creations to.

You definitely did not disappoint! We saw pets, friends and family, and favourite places added to the existing structures. With it being the week before Halloween, that was a definite influence in some sculptures, and it was beautiful to see people adding to existing work, and working together to make something beautiful. In total around 1,200 people took part, and over 300 people stopped to watch the clayscape come to life.

It was great to see the ceramic students working with the public to help with the creation as they supported Duncan and Claire in running the project, putting their training of interactive workshops to use in a professional environment, and they had fun too!

Thanks to everyone who added to our clay cityscape. It looked wonderful, and we couldn’t have done it without you!

Supported by Kent County Council and Potclays Limited. Canterbury Festival’s Public Engagement Porgramme is sponsored by Sir John Swire 1989 Charitable Trust