The Voyagers: Exhibition

Schools and arts award

The Voyagers is a response to Dover’s Bronze Age Boat on the occasion of the 20th anniversary of its discovery.The installation includes two pieces of work by Clare Smith, made with the help of friends, craftmakers, artists, children and pupils from St Mary’s C of E primary school, and the general public. The installation includes a video piece by French artist Philippe Bazin. The film is a 50-minute shot of the port of Durrës, Albania,but as Philippe Bazin says it “presents a space of transition, a port, this could be of Dover …. or anywhere.

The project is a response to the 20th anniversary of the discovery of the Bronze Age Boat in Dover and explores personal and collective memory through shared, communal making and is inspired by the artist’s interest in the symbolism of boats and in terms of its personal significance, the boat as a vehicle for the traumatic leaving behind of the familiar. The title alludes to Now, Voyager, the ship on which Bette Davis completes her transformation from an awkward, unattractive spinster, abused by her mother to a beautiful confident woman in love.

Boats of remembrance: a fleet ofpaper boats made in memory of loved ones that have died.

“Florence, Robert, Dorothy and Betty reunited on the sea with Reginald, all together again”

Boat cloth of names: This piece is loosely inspired by Sumatran ship cloths used in transitional ceremonies, such as weddings, births, and funerals. It is a collection of the names of significant people in the lives of those who have helped make the piece. Special thanks go to Rosie James for her help with stitching it together.

“My father was born within sight of Dover Harbour and swam around the harbour breakwater as a boy.”

Un bateau albanais, 2007, port de Durres, Albanie, 50 minutes, Philippe Bazin

“The Voyagers project has also been about time, taking time to make something with love. I chose this video piece because of the way it invites the viewer simply to look and wait; because of the sense of anticipation it evokes, making the moment when the prow of a cargo ship enters the scene on the right really exciting.” (Clare Smith)

The Voyagers openedon 28 Septemberas part of the anniversary event to celebrate the discovery of the Bronze Age Boat.

Exhibition: 29 September 2012 to 31 October 2012, Bronze Age Boat Gallery, Dover Museum, Market Square Dover, Kent, CT16 1PB

Opening times:
9.30am-5pm Monday to Saturday