What lies beneath


raised of £2,750 target
14% 18 days left
This project will only be funded if at least £2,750 is pledged by July 8th 2019 at 3:32pm

We want to create a unique sculpure at Cuckmere Haven and raise awareness of the effect of coastal erosion on our Chalk Cliffs.

by What lies beneath. in Cuckmere Haven, England, United Kingdom

The Idea

The idea for 'What lies beneath' is to create a string of large, steam bent sweet chestnut spheres, inspired by the beautiful skeletal remains of ancient "coccoliths" the calcium carbonate remains that make up, in their billions (one features as the project logo), the beautiful chalk South Downs, that end at the iconic cliffs between Seaford and Eastbourne. 

The technique to create the sculptures is drawn from age old methods used in creating the Sussex Trug Basket (what is a trug?). Steaming, Sussex sourced, sweet chestnut staves, until they're are amazingly pliable. Which are then bent to the required shape around formers, allowed to cool. The components are then joined together and the sphere slowly takes shape. It is hoped the sculpture will have a 'limed' finish, using lime created from South Down chalk.

The Why

'What lies beneath' will be at the heart of Keith's 2019 Artwave exhibition, aims to raise awareness of the dramatic coastal erosion of the soft chalk cliffs and proceeds of sales at the exhibition will be given to CuckmereSOS who are raising funds to renew, repair and extend the existing sea defences in an attempt to preserve the iconic view of coastguard cottages and the Seven Sisters Cliffs beyond for future generation to come. 

The Who

When Charlie Groves and Keith Pettit first met in the mid nineties, working at a same craft fair together, both struck up a firm friendship and a mutual respect for each others craft.

Charlie is one of the last traditional Sussex Trug Basket Makers still plying his beautiful craft, and Keith a printmaker, sculptor and artist. The project, 'What lies beneath' has grown from previous collaborations between the two; Keith's sculpture trail at the National Trusts 'Walk Woods - Sheffield Park' and the LHF funded sculpture 'Reach' at Pickhams, Sussex.

'What lies beneath' will be exhibited during Artwave, the arts festival for Lewes District and will be on site from the 16th August to 1st September, at the Cable Hut below the Coastguard Cottages, Seaford, East Sussex. BN25 4AR.


This project offers rewards in return for your donation.

£40 or more

£40 Reward

Pledge £40 and you will received an exclusive original print from Keith's wood engraving (used as the project's logo) 'Coccolith', signed and limited to you who pledge. And an invitation to the Private View party at the Coastguard Cottages.

£60 or more

£60 Reward

Pledge £60 and we'll send you a cool t-shirt featuring the 'What lies beneath' logo, a print from Keith's limited edition wood engraved print 'Coccolith' and an invitation to the Private View party at the Coastguard Cottages.

£250 or more

£250 Reward

To thank you for a donation of £250 you will received a beautiful No.6 Sussex Trug made by Charlie, a t-shirt featuring the 'WLB' logo, a signed and edtion print of Keith's engraving 'Coccolith' and And an invitation to the Private View party at the Coastguard Cottages.

£800 or more

0 of 5 claimed

£800 Reward

If you pledge £800 (or above!) You will secure one of the spheres that make up the sculpture 'What lies beneath'. And a N0.6 Trug, the engraved print, t-shirt and you'll be guest of honour (!) at the Private View.

Let's make 'What lies beneath' happen

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