Image of pebbles on a hill spelling out the words opes

New Curators


Fresh insights from b-side New Curators.

Supported by Art Fund and public funding from Arts Council England.The New Curators are Alix, Amy, Bobby, Chris, and Maddison. Between April and October 2021 they have been part of a programme of mentoring and training delivered by the b-side team and other arts professionals with financial support to see and experience work by artists and other organizations and curate an event for the b-side festival 2021.

You can read more about the programme via the New Curators blog posts HERE

The event curated by the group for b-side festival 2021 was Opes and Dreams.

Opes and Dreams

An Ope is defined as an opening. It is used as a common place name around Portland to describe access routes between settlements, provide channels for seawater to be able to disperse, and historically offer openings as strategic grey areas for smuggling. These definitions have been confused in recent times due to extensive privatisation of these once common lands. The ‘Opes and Dreams’ project looks to reform ‘Opes’ as openings for the hopes and dreams of people and communities on Portland. 

The project involved engagement with communities and community groups across Portland - stretching from Castletown, up the Merchant’s Incline, across the East Weares and through to Church Ope Cove. Peoples’ ‘Opes and Dreams’ were collected and reworked into a performative, participatory artwork by Promenade (artists Jessica Taggart and Simon Cole) and toured the island during the festival.

Watch the short film about the festival events 'Opes and Dreams' by New Curator Amy Misfud below.


Supported by Art Fund and public funding from Arts Council England.

Woah...what a ride! We have learnt so much during this exciting opportunity with b-side. From the outset we wanted the hopes and dreams of Portland’s residents and communities to inform our project, and we can’t wait for everyone to see the results. We’ve been taken down so many new and previously unknown avenues throughout the year, it’s been a privilege and we ‘Ope’ you enjoy the project!

The New Curators

Video created by Amy Misfud - 'Opes and Dreams' events at b-side festival 2021

Project events

A man with a pirate hat on standing in front of a group of people

Promenade of Opes and Dreams

09 - 12 Sept  11:00


Various locations daily during the festival at 11am see details below

Join tour guide Simon Cole and performance poet Jessica Taggart Rose to uncover the magical isle of Portland - a place of secret histories, unlikely stories and curious crannies

Project artists