In Conversation

  • Image: St Michaels Mount -Photo Credit Benjamin Elliott
  • Image: Emma Smith in her studio at Wysing Arts Centre

17 Jun 2021

11:30 — 12:30



Join us for an in-conversation between artist Emma Smith and James Green, Director of Newlyn Art Gallery & The Exchange, to announce a new arts trail from Penzance to Marazion, reimagining the ancient submerged forest of Mounts Bay.

There will be an introduction to the project from Rosa Pedley, EXPERIENCE Project Manager, and Léa Guzzo, Senior Culture and Creative Industries Officer from Cornwall Council, with a 40-minute discussion, between Emma and James, followed by questions from the audience.


Mount’s Bay is home to an ancient submerged forest, an enchanting phenomenon that is rarely seen, but occasionally uncovered at very low tides. In 2021, the forest will emerge with a reimagined arts commission by award-winning artist Emma Smith.

Recalled in the name of St Michael’s Mount – Karrek Loos yn Koos – which translates as ‘Grey Rock in the Wood’, it is thought the Mount’s Bay forest reached inland before its submergence, linking what is now land and sea.

Delivered by the EXPERIENCE project, it will be located along the upgraded Penzance to Marazion Coast Path. Due to be installed in autumn 2021, it will provide the opportunity to reflect on the bay, and its geological and ecological importance.

Join us for this online event to find out more.

Emma Smith’s proposal was selected by a panel of experts, and representatives from the local community. The panel were impressed by Emma’s community engagement approach, which is at the core of her concept development. She will work in collaboration with the team at Newlyn Art Gallery & the Exchange to engage local residents in this artwork.

The artwork will celebrate the power of collective and shared imagination. Made up of ‘seeing sticks’ along the path, the artwork will create the impression of clusters of trees, inviting the public to imagine the forest that was lost to the sea. Visitors to the path will be able to sit, lean and engage with the sculptures. A place to encourage imaginative contemplation and reflection across the Bay.





Emma Smith is an international artist based in the UK. She has a social practice and creates work for the public realm. Her work reveals the extraordinary ways we are connected to each other and the landscape. Looking at hidden forms of connection, unearthing histories and proposing new futures. Emma’s work involves the public in its research, development and realisation. Bringing together diverse fields of interest and celebrating local knowledge. Previous commissions include Tate Modern, Barbican, Bluecoat, Arnolfini, Kettle’s Yard and Whitechapel Gallery.

The artwork is part of the EXPERIENCE project, which promotes experiential tourism and sustainable economic growth during October to March. Cornwall’s funding will support activities that encourage a sustainable cultural tourism approach. Connecting visitors with the distinct historical, geographical and cultural assets of the local area.  It aims to leave a positive impact for the community and visitors alike.

Due to run until June 2023, the project is co-funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) through the Interreg France (Channel) England Programme under the Natural and Cultural Heritage funding category. Of the €16.1m ERDF committed to the total project, €1.9m is allocated to Cornwall Council, which is investing a further €0.9m.

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Venue: Online

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