The biennial festival’s popularity has grown rapidly since 2013 and now attracts thousands of visitors from near and far, who come to experience the extraordinary line up of artists whose light based artworks transform the landscape of this residential seaside town.
For 2016 the theme of the festival is Open Spaces and Hidden Places - drawing inspiration from Cheriton’s landscape. Vistors can expect a stella line up of artists - fresh from London’s Lumiere festival are artists. If you are arriving by train, look out for the beautiful new sculpture Espalier by Jyll Bradley. An espalier is a technique for training fruit trees so that maximum sun reaches the ripening fruit. This new work draws upon Bradley's childhood memories of Kentish orchards. Created for the sunny southerly wall of Strange Cargo the work celebrates the twin colours of growth - green leaf and red fruit.
Porté Par le Vent from France. David Ward, ahead of curating this summer’s Turner Contemporary exhibition Seeing Round Corners, is exhibiting a new sound and projection work which is about stepping, walking, touch and being in physical contact with the earth - Light on the Feet – (footfalls for Samuel Beckett) is at Strange Cargo Gallery. Cheriton Light Festival see's the very welcome return of Ross Ashton to All Souls Church, whose captivating recent Durham Lumiere Cathedral projection was seen by thousands - together with Karen Monid their mapped projection and soundscape Spiritus for All Souls will mesmerise visitors.
The line up of artists creating artworks includes Greg Stobbs, Terry Perk & Daniel Tollody, Naomi Eaton-Baudains & Jon Laws, Matt Rowe, Emma Ferry, Nozomi Watanabe, Madelaine Jones, Maureen Jordan, Gavin Morris, Benjamin Hunt, Gergina Scott and Impossible. There is also the now famous light windows trail which encourages exploration of Cheriton’s network of roads, where a walk with your festival map will reveal a beautiful series of lit artworks by artists Zo Defferary and Sam Giles, made in collaboration with dozens of local residents and resulting in a trail of 50 illuminated houses windows to track down and and enjoy.
Visitors are asked to walk to the event, or to use public transport, as there is very limited parking in Cheriton and the High Street will be closed to traffic from 4pm. Stagecoach will be running buses to the event and there is a regular train service into Folkestone West station, which is only a short stroll from the event.