Pearl's Legacy

Saturday, 25th November 2023By Amber Cummins

It feels hard to put into words who Pearl was. She gave something different to everyone she met in a way so personal that I alone could never encompass who she really was.

To me, Pearl was like a big sister – someone I looked up to so intensely that I instantly knew she was one of a kind. She seemed to me to move through life so quickly and yet with little regret – this was one thing that I live by today. Pearl had time for everyone, at any time, no matter what was going on in her life.

It’s weird to think Pearl didn’t always live in Crackington because she will always be part of Cracky and Cracky will always be part of her. Pearl is one of many incredible individuals I’ve been lucky to grow up with. There’s something special about Crackington which I genuinely can’t explain. All I can say is that this Cracky group are all one of a kind – the same way I think about Pearl. She’ll always feel present in Crackington because she had such an effect on all of our lives – that will always live on.

To me, Pearl’s art reflected how she really felt in that moment in life. I think sometimes she may have dampened down her feelings in order to help others and put her friends first. This meant sometimes her art was detailed and ethereal and other times it seemed erratic and disordered. That’s what I liked about her sketchbook in particular – the different feelings you get from one sketch to another. Her work in different mediums was something that reflects what The Pearl Exchange now provide in their workshops.

If Pearl was still with us, would she go to The Pearl Exchange? Yes, without a doubt. The sheer range of workshops offered for young people in Bude and the surrounding areas is something I don’t think has yet been appreciated or taken advantage enough of. From this charity’s initial launch project, festival pop ups and events based at their Bude Hub, they have kept the same values at heart. This is a charity setup with Pearl herself at the heart of it – what she stood for and what she taught everyone around her. In particular, the creative outlet of Arty Friday is something I know Pearl would have loved to be part of. The Pearl Exchange is an example of a home, a safe space in which anyone can belong – just as Pearl created for us at her home in Crackington whilst growing up. It’s fitting that The Pearl Exchange is not just its own entity but in fact an extension of Pearl herself.

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