Beach show — Finale image
Lanterns are invested with creativity and love, along with people’s hopes and wishes for the year ahead. In fitting recognition of all that people put into their creations, the beach effigy is a stunning receptacle to receive them all for the burning. Created by Same Sky artists each year, it sets the scene for the show that follows as lanterns are passed inside.
One of my first assignments for Same Sky (around 1996) was to work with my colleague Paul Harrington. Together we made the beach centrepiece for Burning the Clocks, a seven-metre high structure that resembled a mausoleum.
Paul and I went on to build around fifteen centre pieces for this event. It has been a pleasure and an honour to work with Paul on the central structures for Burning the Clocks over the years.
One of the last big structures we made was a replica of Brighton’s Clocktower. It was ten-metres high and was processed (and just about squeezed) through the narrow streets of Brighton, all the way to the seafront.
I was so pleased to be asked to represent the ‘beach show’ for this year’s event. For me this theme contains all the important elements of Burning the Clocks, metaphorically burning the old in order to welcome the new. The community gather on the seafront with their lanterns, which are then placed onto the fire site. Together, we watch them turn to embers, floating up to find their place amongst the stars.
I chose the image of Brighton’s clocktower because, for me, this was one of our stand-out burnings from past years. It was a perfect structure to house all the community lanterns, which in turn fuelled the burning, making the towering clock collapse beautifully, releasing a flow of our hopes and wishes for the year to come.
Jo became part of the Same Sky team in 1996.