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What is Art Eat? Everything you need to know about the new Ipswich Waterfront festival

PUBLISHED: 19:00 11 July 2019 | UPDATED: 17:04 18 July 2019

Fun for all the family, lies at the heart of Art Eat, the music, art and food festival centred on the Ipswich Waterfront Photo: Art Eat

Fun for all the family, lies at the heart of Art Eat, the music, art and food festival centred on the Ipswich Waterfront Photo: Art Eat

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A strong sense of community lies at the heart of the Ipswich Waterfront where a new family-friendly event which blends art, music and good food will take place this autumn.

The Art Eat festival will play host to a diverse range of bands and performers, bringing a global mix of music to the Ipswich waterfront Photo: Art EatThe Art Eat festival will play host to a diverse range of bands and performers, bringing a global mix of music to the Ipswich waterfront Photo: Art Eat

Ipswich Waterfront will be the focus for an exciting mix of art, performance and globally diverse street food this September when it plays host to Art Eat - a new two-day festival celebrating all things creative and delicious.

Art Eat is the brain child of two creative collaborators, Daisy Lees and Iona Hodgson, and has been designed to be all about taste, sight and sound sensations, which will be providing an exciting focus to the end of the summer.

The curators of this vibrant, colourful, tasty, fun-packed and feel-good weekend want to put local people at the heart of this happening.

Art Eat Festival will be two days of music dotted along the elegant Ipswich Waterfront, with a spectacular line-up, a major exhibition at Dance East, a big Art Fair full of creative talent, a Cake Art Competition, 16 free art workshops and all of this on top of delicious street food, craft markets and and four major urban art projects for Ipswich town centre.

Iona Hodgson and Daisy Lees - organisers of the ART EAT event planned for the  Ipswich Waterfront.  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNIona Hodgson and Daisy Lees - organisers of the ART EAT event planned for the Ipswich Waterfront. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Festival co-director Iona Hodgson said: "We are incredibly proud to be bringing so much high calibre art into the heart of Ipswich, working with some incredible British artists such as Evewright - Everton Wright (London), John O'Connor (Suffolk), Artful Skecha (Essex), Zoe Power (Bristol) and Cydney Barrows (Essex).

Daisy Lees, co-director adds: "We are thrilled to be able to offer so many opportunities to creative people and learning and growth opportunities to the local community. This festival is a gift to Ipswich and we hope to run the festival every two years, and generate a buzz around how fabulous Ipswich and its residents and businesses are."

Highlights of the festival's music programme include locally based international artists gracing the stage at Global Village provided by Ipswich Community Media and BBC Radio Suffolk as well as live sets from local up and coming music-makers and wordsmiths supported by promoters 5011, Arts La'Olam and Claudia Ortiz; A.N.G, Get on the Soapbox, Slow King, Darien Prophecy, Anna Mudeka, Ragged String Band, Piers the Poet, Nqobile Khoza and uplifting DJ sessions from Susanita (IO Radio), Tallulah Goodtimes, Skippa J (Missile Sound), Bopper Ranking (Freedom Sounds), and Daniel Lee Harvey, among many others.

Community music and workshops will be provided by the incredible array of groups from across Suffolk including Chinese drums from ACCE, Wooden Roots African drums, Big Sing, Suffolk Soul Singers, Ipswich Reggae Choir, Suffolk Samba Band, Samboomba and Group A from Snape Maltings.

Four murals and public space artworks will be created in the run-up to Art Eat Photo: Art EatFour murals and public space artworks will be created in the run-up to Art Eat Photo: Art Eat

At least three vibrant community murals will be appearing around the Waterfront in advance of the festival. Celebrated Black-British visual artist Evewright has been working in partnership with Ipswich Council for Racial Equality and residents of a local prison to design and paint a mural funded by Stop Loan Sharks Community Fund.

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Community Muralist Zoe Power led nine workshops with six charities to gather ideas and inspirations for a new visual landmark celebrating the spirit of Ipswich, and Instagram art star Artful Skecha worked with women and children at Guru Nanak Gurdwara to design a mural in homage to prominent Suffragette Princess Sophia Duleep Singh. All three murals will be appearing between July and August on prominent sites around Ipswich Waterfront.

Celebrated local contemporary sculptor John O'Connor will be staging a major exhibition at the Jerwood Dance House. Blending the physical with the emotional, his stunning, figurative bronze work depicts 'states of mind that are inherent in us all'.

John exhibits at Chelsea Flower Show every year and works with some of the country's best garden designers, as well as selling his work to private collectors throughout the world. This exclusive exhibition will be open to the public from Saturday September 21 to Thursday September 26.

Over the festival weekend there will also be a two-day Art, Print & Craft Fair in the ground floor foyer of the University of Suffolk. This will be a spectacular display of artist and crafters with 50 selected artists from Norwich, Chelmsford and London as well as professionals from Suffolk.

In collaboration with the amazing Suffolk's own Outrageous Cake Company, Art Eat will also host a Cake Art Competition open to all Ipswich residents which will be held at Quay Place on Saturday the September 21.

This unique and fun display of Ipswich's very own 'Cake Art" will be open to the public from 10am - 3.30pm. Watch out from 4pm there will be a Cake Art procession along the site of the festival starting outside Dance East and finishing at Cult Cafe at approximately 4.30pm when there will be a grand finale Let Them Eat Cake.

As part of this event on Saturday only, Norfolk based Cookie Kitchen will be offering novelty gingerbread decoration workshops for all ages from 10.30am - 2.30pm at Quay Place, Key St, Ipswich IP4 1BZ.

Other attractions will include a fun fair, outdoor bars, 35 delicious street-food traders and a weekend guaranteed to be full of smiles and wonder.

The Art Eat festival is free and can be found on the Ipswich Waterfront and opening times are: Saturday September 21 11am - 7.30pm and Sunday September 22 12pm - 7.30pm.

If you are interested in getting involved and volunteering for the festival sign up here.

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