Saturday, 4 March 2017

Porthleven Art Auction now on view at the Old Lifeboat House Gallery.

From tomorrow (Sunday 5th March) all the art works that have been created from the timber baulks will be on view in the Old Lifeboat House Gallery.  This will give people who can get to the gallery a chance to see the works in the flesh.  For anyone interested but who cannot make it to Porthleven in person all the works are now viewable online thanks to local auctioneer David Lay.  You can view the works, save your favourite pieces and bid from the comfort of your computer, smart phone or tablet!

The gallery will be open from:
 March 5th-8th 10:30am - 4:30pm
March 9th-10th 10:30am - 7:30pm

The auction itself will be held in a giant marquee on Saturday, March 18th 

Below is some background on how the auction came to being.

In all, ten major storms hit Porthleven between November 2013 and February 2014...

during the day of February 5th 2014, the Porthleven Harbour baulks were smashed allowing huge seas into the inner harbour - causing boats to sink and damage to others.

Two ton wooden baulks have protected the inner harbour since its construction in 1858
The Porthleven Baulk Project is an imaginative, creative fundraiser. It is about creating beauty and hope from devastation, by using broken baulks, destroyed by fierce nature and re-forming them into a wide variety of unique and stunning art pieces. Out of loss and darkness comes hope.

The reclaimed baulks were cut up in blocks or as a 'canvas'.
On the 5th February 2014 the harbour defences in Porthleven, South West Cornwall gave way to the torrential beating from sea. Ten boats sank in Porthleven harbour, and many fishermen lost floats, nets and crab pots when huge waves crashed through into the inner harbour. Work had already been impossible due to the extreme, on-going weather conditions and then the storms destroyed their means to catch.

The storm of 2013/ 2014 lasted for six months. During that difficult time, the Charity the Fishermen’s Mission, supported fishermen and their families. It was soon decided by the trustees and the board, that support was needed urgently. Payments of up to £500 would be given to fishermen upon the receipt of one household bill in arrears. Over £110,000 was given to fishing families in the South West alone.

Baulks were cut up into sections and stored.
The Porthleven baulks, individually are two tonnes of wood bolted together and with substantial metal caps. They are lifted into the harbour entrance by a crane. As a resident of Porthleven and a Regional Fundraising Manager for the Fishermen’s Mission (in Cornwall) I would walk past the boat yard and look on at the broken pieces of the harbour defenses and often think of the storms. An idea formed, permission to use the wood was granted and the Porthleven Baulk Project was launched.

We have a team of dedicated volunteers working on the project tirelessly. They are Leigh Santi, Rita Collier, Pat Hosking, Bel Higgs, Suzie Williams, Barbara Powell, John Winterton and Louise Winterton. We are working with many creative people to make innovative items from the broken baulks, which will then be sold at an auction in aid of the Charity.  You can follow progress on Twitter with @PorthlevenArt or on their Facebook page.  ..

At least 80 artists have already agreed to paint on to the wood (in canvas cut sizes). Others are working with the wood to create mosaics, etchings, ceramic and glass. Craftspeople are creating items of furniture. Each piece will have a letter of signed authenticity to prove that these pieces are from the Porthleven baulks. Artists include Daphne McClure, Michael and son Nick Praed, Naomi Frears, Elaine Turnbull, Kim Potter, David Hosking, Mark Lace, Nigel Chamberlain, Caroline Cleave, Christine Brunnock, David Cordeaux, Julia Schofield, Cailtin McClintock, Dee Cook, Dame Carol-Anne Duffy, the Queen's poet, Lesley Holmes, Kim Potter, Suzie Williams, Jason Lilley and many more.

The auction will be held on 18th March of next year (2017) in the Atlantic Inn, Porthleven with an online auction as well. All the pieces will be on display at the Lifeboat House from the 4th to the 10th March 2017.

This is a unique opportunity to support The Fishermen’s Mission by purchasing not only a piece of social history but a celebration of enduring talent.