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Artist Richard DeDomenici promises to take audiences on an Arctic adventure when he attempts to construct an igloo made entirely of Kendal Mint Cake at this year’s Mintfest.
The cool art installation could be one of the highlights of the sixth Mintfest International Festival of Street Arts which will bring a vibrant mix of the world’s brightest street stars to Kendal on 31 August – 2 September.
Inspired by explorers such as Edmund Hillary and Ernest Shackleton who packed bars of Kendal Mint Cake for their expeditions, Richard will attempt to go where no other artist has gone before by building a Mint Igloo.
A total of 64 giant slabs of Kendal Mint Cake will be used to create the domed structure which will stand at around three foot high. Measuring 15cm x 25cm x 40cm each, the mint blocks have been constructed by Wilson’s of Kendal using special wooden moulds.
Audiences at the K Village on Riverside Place in Kendal will be able to watch the acclaimed performance artist as he undertakes the sticky project.
Richard will begin laying the first blocks of his Mint Igloo on Friday 31 August. The event will run until 4.30pm on Sunday 2 September when Richard will attempt to eat his way out of the igloo.
Richard, who is Mintfest artist-in-residence, says: “We will be working with very big blocks so this is uncharted territory. Nobody has ever tried to do anything like this with Mint Cake before.
“The project is linked to explorers like Shackleton who used Kendal Mint Cake on his trips and built igloos. We are embracing his spirit of exploration and uncertainty and this project is a journey into the unknown. We are genuinely not sure what will happen.”
Since graduating with a First in Fine Art at Cardiff University, Richard has pushed the boundaries with a wide variety of performances that make use of conceptual art tactics to challenge people’s perceptions.
His work has been seen at venues including the Edinburgh Festival and the National Theatre and he’s performed as far afield as Beijing, Iceland and New York.
Mandy Dixon, General Manager of K Village, where the igloo will be built says We’re excited to host Richard DeDomenici’s mint igloo, which we know will be a real talking point for locals and visitors alike,” MintFest is a powerful celebration of street arts and this quirky endeavour really will capture the essence of the event – fun, creativity and surprise!”
Now in its sixth year, Mintfest 2012 promises to fill every corner of Kendal with a dazzling array of inventive street performances from around the globe.
Julie Tait, the director of Kendal Arts International which creates Lakes Alive, says: “From Mint Igloos to Fire Villages, Mintfest 2012 promises to entertain, amaze and surprise audiences with an eclectic mix of contemporary street performance.
“The festival has earned a fantastic reputation for presenting world-class street performance in a friendly and accessible fashion. Most of the performances are free and you are guaranteed to see something quite extraordinary.”
Among the anticipated events at this year’s festival is a new contemporary circus show from Circus Ronaldo who impressed audiences at Mintfest two years ago with their intoxicating blend of physical skill, razor-sharp wit and high drama.
De Vuurmeesters from Belgium will transform Nobles Rest into a Fire Village of antiquity with blazing installations and fiery carnival creatures.
The Brewery Arts Centre will be the setting for a full programme of music and performance including a Twenties Vintage night with DJ’s playing old 78s on picnic-style gramophones and an eccentric evening with The Hot Potato Syncopators featuring ukuleles, a musical saw and a tea chest bass.
Abbot Hall Park will come to life with a myriad of performances, a fountain bar and an astronaut’s caravan. There will be trampoline acrobatics from Cirque Inextremiste, live festival music from the Jaipur Kawa Brass Band and a special show for Mini-Mintfesters aged under five created just for them by Fevered Sleep.
Throughout Saturday and Sunday Mintfest on the Streets will bring laughter, music, comedy, magic, acrobatics and more to all corners of Kendal. Street performers will lurk around every corner in this giant free street party.
Most of the performances are free. There are some ticketed performances.
Lakes Alive is a programme created and directed by Kendal Arts International with Manchester International Arts
Lakes Alive has been funded by Legacy Trust UK, creating a lasting impact from the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games by funding ideas and local talent to inspire creativity across the UK.
More details and the full Mintfest 2012 programme can be found at www.lakesalive.org
Kendal Mint Cake Facts
Kendal Mint Cake has long been popular with climbers and mountaineers due to its high energy content.
It is made from sugar, glucose, water and peppermint oil.
Edmund Hillary and his team carried Kendal Mint Cake on the first successful ascent of Mount Everest in 1953.
Mint cake was also supplied to the Imperial Trans-Antarctic Expedition of 1914-1917 which was led by Sir Ernest Shackleton.
Earlier this year Peter Truelove of Windermere found a bar of Kendal Mint Cake in his attic dating back to 1964. It’s believed to be the oldest in Britain – and was still in mint condition.