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Andreas Angelidakis - 'Seawall' - for Hastings
South East

Rock-a-Nore Rd
East Sussex,, TN34 3DW
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From 29 May - 14 November 2021, see Greek artist Andreas Angelidakis's outdoor artwork created with Hastings Contemporary for the town.

Seawall’ is a collection of eight identical structures located in a small public square just outside Hastings Contemporary. The structures are made to resemble concrete accropode blocks that are designed to resist the action of waves on coastal locations. The work is the artist’s response to the gallery’s close proximity to the seafront, referencing the encroaching ocean and coastal erosion due to climate change.

Using the guise of human response to flooding through the invention of sea defence mechanisms his work reflects on whether the border between land and sea can continue to be a habitable place.

Up close, these sea wall blocks are revealed to be soft sculptures, their concrete texture an out-of-focus trompe-l’oeil realised through digital printed vinyl. Arranged convivially in the courtyard space, the blocks can be comfortably reclined on like outdoor chaise longues, available for socially distant socialising. The different elements can be used as a meeting place, reconfigured to form a wall, or used like toys forming a playground to climb on — it is entirely for visitors to the work to decide.

From a distance ‘Seawall’ presents the spectacle of severe-looking structures being relaxed on, which might look rather odd to passers-by. Softening what at first appears hard, Angelidakis’ artwork queers the idea of the seawall, playing with people’s expectations and prompting questions while side-stepping any rigid definitions.

On being commissioned to create his work for Waterfronts, Andreas Angelidakis said: “We are living in a moment of unsure transitions, from what we used to know the world to be, towards an unpredictable future. This uncertainty manifests itself on many scales. We are migrants and we don't know if we will reach our destination, we are consumers inside a failed economic system, we are workers trapped in political systems that continue to look out for the well-being of the powerful. Finally, we are humans whose way of life is destroying our home, as well as the home of every other living creature. Standing on a beach, like Hastings, is the perfect spot to look out to what the future brings, to look out to the horizon.”

Andreas Angelidakis describes himself as “an architect who doesn’t build.” Instead he utilises an artistic voice that switches between the languages of architecture, curating, writing, and the internet. His art is concerned with spaces, buildings, and the society that inhabits them, often creating environments for people to activate.

Created as part of England's Creative Coast.