Refugees’ clothing to be hung from Cathedral ceiling

Arabella Dorman's Suspended
Arabella Dorman's Suspended

Items of refugee clothing are to be hung from the temporary ceiling in the nave at Canterbury Cathedral in a piece by artist Arabella Dorman.

Mostly collected from beaches on the Mediterranean island of Lesbos, the ragged accoutrements highlight the plight of thousands of people fleeing war and poverty.

Ms Dorman explained: “My interest lies in the men, women and children behind the headlines, the individual stories behind the politics.

“I attempt to illuminate and to reveal the human face of conflict, and to find light in the darkest corners of existence.”

Canterbury’s version of the artwork will include clothes left behind in makeshift camps in Calais.

The temporary installation is possible as the nave is undergoing renovation work and the garments have been suspended from a temporary safety deck built beneath the vaulted ceiling.

Revd Nick Papadopulos
Revd Nick Papadopulos

Nick Papadopulos, the Cathedral’s canon treasurer, said: “Arabella Dorman’s Suspended is a powerful call to us to remember – and pray for – those driven from their homes and those who suffer at the hands of power today.”

The cost of the installation is being met by sponsorship. Visitors will not incur an additional charge to view Suspended, but entry to the cathedral precincts remains £12.50 for adults and £8 for children.

Residents living within four miles of Bell Harry can apply for a Precincts Pass which allows free entry to the cathedral and grounds.

Suspended will be on view from 23 February until 16 May.


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