Wednesday, January 19, 2011

The Folkestone Mermaid

From Local Woman Immortalized in Bronze as Folkestone's Mermaid:

Georgina Baker has been selected as Folkestone’s answer to Copenhagen’s famous “Little Mermaid” statue. Local resident Georgina will strike the distinctive “Mermaid” pose as the model for a life-size bronze statue being cast by celebrated artist Cornelia Parker for the Folkestone Triennial 2011.

The selection ends the artist’s public search for a model from the town to become immortalised as “The Folkestone Mermaid”. When the competition process was launched in June, former Turner Prize nominee Cornelia Parker said, “This is not a beauty contest. I am not looking for a look-alike of the idealised Copenhagen Mermaid, but for a real person, a free spirit, so any shape or size welcome!”

Local women over the age of 18 were invited to enter by sending in a photograph of themselves in swimwear before a final shortlist of candidates was drawn up from which Georgina was chosen. The bronze statue will sit on rocks looking out to sea just outside the harbour wall.

Georgina Baker was born in Folkestone in 1972. A keen scuba diver, Georgina began swimming as a baby and to this day she swims two miles a week. Georgina enjoys the arts, is a qualified interior designer and aerobics instructor, and works part time helping disabled people through physiotherapy.
Folkestone is on the southeast coast of England, by the way. I thought this was a neat way to pay tribute to mermaids, HC Andersen as well as "real" women and the sponsoring coastal town.

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