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RETREAT forms part of an international project with parallel residencies happening in Sweden and The Netherlands. Each uses creative means to explore a different environmental challenge with an intergenerational group of people. The findings from these projects will inform research that explores sustainability and creative problem solving.

The UK residency will take place in Cornwall and deal with the impact of sea level rise on coastal communities, rethinking how we should live when our homes and lives start to be affected by climate change. We want to bring together a diverse group of people with different skills and expertise; citizens with local knowledge about the place where they live, policy-makers designing the future of our coasts, artists with the ability to creatively address challenges, and scientists with background knowledge of the issue. 

As children and teenagers are the future inhabitants of our coasts, we need to include them in these conversations now. Also, we think they will help  adults to creatively and playfully re-imagine issues. The residency therefore invites entire families to participate and the activities are designed to engage everyone and allow all to express their views. 

The results of the residency will be exhibited in a collectively-curated exhibition, to which we will invite a larger group of stakeholders, policy-makers, academics and arts-enthusiasts. 

The residency will be led by a group of experienced educators / facilitators / artists from Cornwall.

Main organisers:

NATALIA EERNSTMAN is an artist, educator and researcher, specialising in (community) learning through artful and performative means. She initiates her own projects and has worked with theatre companies (Golden Tree Productions and Wild Works), universities (Exeter University), public authorities and charities. Over the past 5 years she has build an extensive body of work around climate change, sea level rise and coastal erosion in Cornwall engaging communities (see StormSongs) and creating performance (Weather the Storm). She runs the 'MA Creative education: Making Learning' at Plymouth College of Art. With 10 years of experience Natalia is a skilled facilitator, and has run large site-specific arts events. 

SIAN PILLEY is a painter, visual and community artist from Porthleven and a Primary Teacher with over 20 years of teaching experience. With a background in the Arts and a childhood fascination with theatre and props Sian has worked with Will Coleman, Sense of Place, The National Trust, Cornish Band Dalla, Kneehigh/ WildWorks and Fenton Music on a Cornish Community Music resource ʻFoochʼ. Sian has coordinated HLF Community Arts Project ʻIn our Lifetimeʼ (a film project for Porthleven Twinning Association) and most recently FEAST funded community arts and heritage Project Stitch in Time . She is currently on the working party for the regeneration of the The Bickford Smith Institute, Porthleven. She feels that stories are central to communities and provide an excellent vehicle for teaching and learning about where we have come from, where we are and what possibilities our futures may hold.

DREW PILLEY has worked in the outdoor industry for over 30 years. His most recent position, being Programme leader and lecturer on the FdSc Outdoor Education, Truro College alongside R.Y.A Principal for the College water sports centre. Other responsibilities include technician responsibilities include Manager of the FdSc and the water sports centre. His specialisms range from Sea, Surf and River Kayaking Coach, Canoe leader, Sailing and Windsurf instructor. Drew is also an accredited practitioner for the Institute of Outdoor Learning. He is committed to facilitating learning and development in the outdoor environment at a grass roots level and is also a Forest School Leader.

Guest facilitators:

HELEN TANNER is a Psychosocial Consultant, Speaker, Trainer, Coach and qualified Dramatherapist with an extensive portfolio of working nationally (including seven years as Charity Director) and internationally (including New Zealand, Botswana, Tunisia and war-affected Libya, Myanmar, South Sudan, Kosovo, and Belfast). She has delivered bespoke projects to Governments, non-governmental agencies, and public sector departments. She was chosen as a Rotary Peace Fellow in 2012, and a Global peace Index Ambassador in 2015. She holds an MA in Conflict Resolution from the University of Bradford and a first degree in Law. Further info about services and upcoming events is available at:

JAKE BOEX's PhD in climate science and degree in geology sparked a juxtaposed journey into eastern philosophy and meditation. He discovered that the mind, as well as the Earth system, is interdependent. After a period as a teacher in the UK, he returned to the east to teach science at a Tibetan Buddhist monastery in Kathmandu. Since January he has immersed himself in clay, finding a creative space to cultivate a coalition of concepts from science and spiritual philosophy. His latest work ‘time stands still’ is being shown at the Summer House Gallery in Marazion July 13th - 25th 2018.

About: What We Do








About: What We Do
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