‘Folkestone is an Art School’ proclaims an artwork at the station, but it’s more: it’s a treasury of contemporary art scattered through the town, sometimes hidden, sometimes half-concealed by the rising tide, all intriguing or moving or both. Many are intended to make you smile – and usually succeed.
The art begins as soon as you leave the train at Folkestone Central – and so does the treasure hunt: many of the installations patiently awaiting discovery. A small bronze bear by Tracey Emin shelters beneath a bench, unnoticed by passers-by. That is the nature of this modern art trail, the delights the greater because unexpected.
Folkestone has undergone a near-revolution in art terms in the last decade, making it one of the most exciting seaside provincial towns in this country. This walk encompasses around 30 installations by, among others, Banksy, Wallinger, Gormley, Craig-Martin, Cornelia Parker, Yoko Ono, Richard Wilson, Ian Hamilton Finlay. Many of the artworks are entwined with the town’s history though you can take them at face value and enjoy all the debate that contemporary art can inspire.
Imogen Corrigan is better known as a medieval historian, but she has lived in Folkestone for 14 years and loves to study the modern art on her doorstep.
Start and finish
10.30am & 5.00pm, Folkestone Central Station.
£180, including morning refreshments, lunch and one journey by taxi.
Maximum 12 participants.
Walking: nearly five miles, some up/downhill.
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