Dover Town Council commissioned DAD to deliver the Pebbles project to deepen the public’s understanding and appreciation of the geology of chalk and pebbles. The project included a range of events and raised awareness of the safe walking path to/from the White Cliffs from/to Athol Terrace for visitors and residents of  the Town. The path marks the ascent or descent from/to the Urban/Countryside and is marked by the new Dover Totem sculptures by Elaine Tribley, which explore the geology as well as the plant and bird life of the White Cliffs. The Totems are one of the features of the CHALKUP21 coastal walking trail of 21st Century architecture and public art works.

A further element of the project is A Parable for Endeavour, a collaborative film by Joanna Jones, Helen Lindon and Clare Smith. A large part of the film is shot on the beach below the pebbles kiosk at the eastern end of the Dover esplanade. The film was commissioned for SALT, Festival of the Sea and Environment, Folkestone 2016 with additional support from the Dover Town Council.

An important aspect of the project is the work of Benjamin Hunt, a young artist who recently moved to Dover. Ben worked closely with Cllr. Sue Jones and the Pebbles CIC and Geologist Mel Wrigley as well as local communities and schools to uncover factual, fictional, mythical narratives regarding the white cliffs of Dover and its beaches, and in particular consider erosion as a key theme.

Ben kicked off his element of the project by interviewing members of the public at Dover’s Regatta on 27 August 2017 about what the White Cliffs mean to them.

“I am investigating the geological form of the White Cliffs of Dover and the various industrial practices and local / international mythologies and narratives that have manifested from the landscape due to the unique characteristics of Dover’s geology. A theme running through the project is ‘erosion’. This notion stems from the erosive nature of pebbles that are found on the seafront that originally manifested from the cliffs, and the permeable nature of local narrative and mythology.” (Benjamin Hunt 2017)

Futher milestones of the project were the Pebbles Screening at the Dover Silver screen cinema and the final CRETA twilight event at the Pebbles Kiosk on the Dover Sea Front in July 2018.

I am still amazed how many people came to the Pebbles Screening event, the cinema was almost full, also to the final CRETA event at the pebbles kiosk and I realised how connected Dover is and that I can be a normal person, a resident, and an artist here.

I felt more creative with the transparency and lateral way that DAD works, you two are artists too and understand the process. The humilty is something I find attractive in Dover.  (Benjamin Hunt, July 2018)

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An interview with Dover artist, Benjamin Hunt

In 2016, Dover Town Council commissioned Dover Arts Development (DAD) to deliver the ‘Pebbles Project’ in order to deepen the public’s understanding and appreciation of chalk and pebbles. On 9th [...]