Playland was a film commission and a community engagement project which encouraged people to think about where and how they live and how they deal with and influence change.


The project took its inspiration from People Pebble, a new artist’s film and video work by Jivko Darakchiev. Darakchiev was born in Bulgaria, grew up in the USA and now lives in Paris. The 18 minute work, shot on 16mm black and white film stock takes a very personal look at the landscapes and communities of Northern France and South East England – areas he had never before visited. In the film he hints at how the use of land has changed in these contrasting landscapes in recent times, how this has affected those who live there and how individuals have made new ways of life, both at work and at play, by actively involving themselves in dealing with these changes.


Playland was shown at five coastal towns in the south east of England. At each venue People Pebble was contextualised by drawings, poetry and photographs particular to each town and created and sourced by local communities with the involvement of artists local to each venue.


People living in rapidly developing town centres of Folkestone and Margate worked with locally based artists to gather their thoughts on how their home environments were changing and how their senses of community had changed. In St Leonards-on-Sea, refugees who had decided to make their homes in the town reflected on both the difficulties they faced when arriving and how they had forged new friendships through introducing local communities to their own traditions. In Worthing, people with learning disabilities expressed their senses of self and the town they live in by contributing to an exhibition at the local museum and art gallery.


In Brighton, and hosted by Carers Centre, young carers worked with local artist and poet Evlynn Sharp to reflect on their lives and how they adapted to events and changes that their peers may know very little about, or understand.


Read the PLAYLAND catalogue here


People Pebble was commissioned by

Christine Gist and Jim Shea.