The Whitegold Project is a new initiative set in the heart of Cornwall, in an area famous for China Clay production and renowned for the surrounding sub-tropical gardens.
Developed over the past few years by the St Austell Bay Economic Forum the project is the vision of some dedicated local people bringing together local businesses, the public sector, artists, gardeners and the people living and working in the area. It is a vision of St Austell, its Bay and the China Clay country as a place where amazing art, craft and design of all sizes and shapes, temporary and permanent, of clay and about clay, appears in public spaces to intrigue, challenge and delight residents and visitors alike. The artwork is integral in the vision for St Austell - Garden Town which aims to make the town and the surrounding areas into a fabulous garden, celebrating another great feature of the area, the “paradise” gardens - Eden Project, The Lost Gardens of Heligan, Trewithen, Pine Lodge, Caerhays Castle plus many other National Trust and private sites. We imagine a ‘Garden Route’ in the heart of Cornwall.
The project represents a unique opportunity to bring together artists, makers and designers with landscape designers, gardeners and ecologists to challenge, inspire and engage. Recently a grant from the Coastal Communities Fund has allowed us to make a start on this long-term vision of cultural regeneration.
To achieve this the Whitegold and Green Projects want to make creative, innovative and activated public spaces that use art and gardening to celebrate the culture of clay country, enhancing its sense of place. We believe that both art in public spaces and greening projects which are socially aware can play a vital role in helping to generate pride in the area, increase a sense of ownership, develop cultural identity and contribute to a better quality of life.
The Green Project aims to turn the St Austell area into a vast garden with a wild flower corridor stretching from the A30 to St Austell, through the China Clay area, past the approaches to the world-renowned Eden Project, which invites visitors towards the centre of St Austell through our garden gateways.
The Whitegold Project aims to foster local, national and international cultural activity and exchange around clay, ceramics and the arts which explores future sustainability through a variety of means. Projects include the burgeoning Whitegold Festival and as well as plans for small and large-scale, permanent and temporary art installations made from the clay and about the culture of clay country. Two new initiatives are the Whitegold International Ceramic Prize and Clay Exchange, fostering collaborations and new cultural networks. The object of the Whitegold Project is to raise the profile of St Austell as a world recognised destination for art and clay, an attraction for visitors from across the globe.