Photo of Washed up glass buoy by Completely Coastal

About the project

Fishermen are no strangers to uncertainty and risk, yet accelerating rates of environmental, social and regulatory change are having an enormous impact on UK fisheries – the fabric of many coastal communities. Brexit is seen by many people in the fishing industry as a critical opportunity to renegotiate their rights and re-orientate fisheries and marine management in the UK. For others, it poses a further threat to their long-term economic and social wellbeing.

The objective of this research-for-impact project is to empower and raise the political voice of inshore and typically marginalised fishing communities in anticipation of new avenues for them to engage in policy debate over UK fisheries regulation and fishers’ rights outside of the Europe Union.

The central concept of Buoyed is to develop beautiful pieces of playable art through which fishers’ voices are represented and shared with the general public, media and selected decision-makers. Stories and songs will be co-created that reflect on fishers’ experiences of environmental and policy change, and their aspirations and intentions under Brexit.

Buoyed is an interactive, playful cluster of magical glass buoys that hang above head height, suspended by slender wooden stems. They tease you with their pulsing glow and muffled voices, enticing you in for a closer listen. And as you reach them, they start speaking to you…

The project is funded by an ESRC Impact Accelerator Award from the University of Exeter.