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Paper Forest was a rural arts project produced and created by Cabinet of Curiosity that focused on the heritage, nature and stories connected to the historic woodland pasture of Cobham Park and Cobham village on the North Kent Downs.
Participants of all ages, from 4 years upwards, took part in a series of free pop-up paper craft activities that were hosted by National Trust Owletts, Jeskyns Park, Shorne Woods Country Park and National Trust South Lodge Barn during Summer and Autumn 2017. During these sessions participants learnt about paper crafts through making their own individual paper cut silhouette that followed the theme of Paper Forest.
The art work produced by workshop participants was converted into digital files for laser cutting and collectively contributed towards the making of a large scale cut paper textile mural. The mural has been gifted to National Trust Owletts for permanent exhibition within their collection.
The paper forest project was a joy to host. Many members of our family enjoyed contributing and black and white animals appeared on many family fridges during the course of it. I loved making a replica of my grandfather's favourite ore bath and was very excited to see it feature in the final piece. The community loved having a reason to stop and stay a little longer. I feel the connection we all have with Owletts is strengthened thanks to this process. The final piece also brings a modern touch to an old, re-purposed space within Owletts. I love it and feel honoured to have it at Owletts. I'm sure my great grandfather [Herbert Baker], who was a modernist and a designer who loved symbols and integrating the representation of local people and ideas, would have appreciated this project. The artists are talented but open, and have mastered the knack of sharing and involving people effortlessly. This is a rare combination. I look forward to working them more in the future.
Camilla Baker, National Trust Owletts.
Photography by Cabinet of Curiosity