Raybel Charters, land and water

  • The Margate School

In a Masterclass with Raybel Charters, The Margate School Art&Design Saturday Club delved into the topic of climate change, focusing on its effects on both land and water. 

The day began with a tour of the Thames Sailing Barge ‘Raybel’ and the Raybel exhibition, which provided insights into local history and the Sail Cargo movement, a method of transportation with zero emissions. 

Club members were then divided into three groups, each rotating through a series of workshops that shared interconnected themes. Through these workshops, they creatively explored the impact of climate change, the consequences of rising sea levels and the complex relationship between land and water, through science and art-based practice.  

The first session was conducted by Martin Brockton and Ned Brockton from Outdoor Studios. This group examined the local geology of the Swale area, investigating how deposits of Brick Earth and flood lands influenced the region’s development and employment. They also considered the future impact of rising sea levels on the Creek and the potential benefits this might bring. Using samples of estuarine silts and clays, Club members created and decorated ceramic tiles by sieving and refining the materials into fine slips. 

In the second session, led by the Crab Museum in Margate, Club members explored the world of bugs. They learned about the habitat, behaviour, and timing of insect life in the area. Using digital microscopes, they created detailed drawings of bugs, discussed various science-related careers and considered ways to contribute positively to the community. 

The third workshop was headed by professional forager Chris Foster, focusing on the ecology of local plants and foraging for naturally occurring foods with medicinal properties. Club members learnt about hydrology, edible species and the impact of human-induced ecosystem changes. They also explored the concept of food as medicine and discussed the world of biomechanics. 

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