Family Fun in the North East This February and All the Art and Exhibitions to Visit
See stars, go to the jungle or walk like an Egyptian
Celebrate talented artists or try a new skill for a new year
VISIONS OF ANCIENT EGYPT
FROM 28TH JANUARY
Laing Art Gallery, Newcastle
0191 278 1611
This exhibition examines ancient Egypt in art and design and explores how it has changed over time. It draws upon two important historic events – Jean-François Champollion’s 1822 decipherment of hieroglyphs and Howard Carter’s 1922 discovery of Tutankhamun’s tomb. Expect to see paintings, sculpture, photography, fashion and jewellery and work by artists including Joshua Reynolds, Lawrence Alma-Tadema, David Hockney, Chant Avedissian, Chris Ofili and Sara Sallam. Plus, you’ll learn more about the Western fascination with ancient Egypt as well as its own engagement with its ancient past. This exhibition is organised by the Sainsbury Centre in association with the Laing Art Gallery.
2ND FEBRUARY–1ST MARCH
The Exchange, North Shields
Local artist Pam, who trained at Newcastle College of Art in the 70s and worked as a display artist for a large studio in Newcastle, creates realism with acyclic paint and a dose of illustration. The work you’ll see on display takes inspiration from her mother, who was also an artist and encouraged Pam’s love of painting. She hopes these paintings will help you reminisce.
CERAMIC CLASSES: MAKE A JUG
Shipley Art Gallery, Gateshead
0191 477 1495
Guided by Muddy Fingers ceramicists, you’ll learn how to decorate and assemble your own jug, which will then be fired and glazed in a colour of your choice, and returned to the Shipley Art Gallery where you can collect it approximately four weeks later. Give it as a gift or keep it in your home as a proud reminder of your new talent* (*maybe).
WILHELMINA BARNS-GRAHAM: PATHS TO ABSTRACTION
FROM 11TH FEBRUARY
Hatton Gallery, Newcastle University
0191 277 8877
This large-scale exhibition explores the work of Scottish artist Wilhelmina Barns-Graham. From her early work based on the Cornish landscape to the abstract canvases she made during the 1960s and early 1970s, the exhibition features around 70 paintings and drawings and has been organised in collaboration with the Wilhelmina Barns-Graham Trust.
SCREEN PRINTING ON GLASS
National Glass Centre, Sunderland
0191 515 5555
This day-long class offers you an introduction into screen printing onto glass. You’ll learn how to coat a screen with photosensitive emulsion, screen-printing techniques, and how to fuse the printed layers of glass together, then you can impress your friends and family with your new skill.
SESHEPENMEHYT: INTO THE AFTERLIFE
UNTIL 19TH FEBRUARY
Great North Museum: Hancock
0191 208 6765
The inner coffin of an Ancient Egyptian woman known as Seshepenmehyt, on loan from the British Museum, is the centre point of this temporary exhibition. She lived during Ancient Egypt’s Late Period and hieroglyphic inscriptions on the coffin tell us that she played a musical instrument called a sistrum in the temple of Amun-Ra at Thebes. Visitors to the museum will gain a fascinating insight into Ancient Egyptian beliefs surrounding the afterlife and also learn about the gods and goddesses involved with Seshepenmehyt’s journey after her death.
NEEDLE FELT SEAL AND PUP
Arc Stockton Arts Centre
Whether you’re a pro felter, or you’ve never even picked up a needle, experienced instructor Carol will provide all the materials and guidance you need to create your own felt seal and pup. These needle felt workshops are a great opportunity to try something new.
FANTASTIC FILMS AND HOW TO MAKE THEM
Alnwick Castle Courtyard
Join best-selling author LJ Ross and a panel of filmmakers at Alnwick Castle to learn how to create and produce films that transform lives, as part of Alnwick Story Fest. Plus, they’ll be announcing the winners of the Northern Film Prize.
STORIES OF SERVICE: TYNESIDE’S HOME FRONT DURING THE SECOND WORLD WAR
UNTIL 26TH FEBRUARY
Discovery Museum, Newcastle
0191 232 6789
Now extended until 26th February, this exhibition shares the stories of Tyneside women and individuals who came to Tyneside from the African and Caribbean diaspora during the Second World War. The Discovery Museum has been working with the Imperial War Museums to get a better insight into these stories before they became lost, so locals and visitors can learn more about our heritage.
HOT BUTTERED MATTRESS
The Biscuit Factory, Newcastle
0191 261 1103
In February, The Biscuit Factory will present the work of comedian, actor, author and artist Jim Moir (who you might know better as Vic Reeves) for a solo exhibition – Hot Buttered Mattress. This month-long show will feature both real and imagined characters taken from popular culture as well as showcasing Jim’s keen interest in birds.
See stars, sing along, or become a scientist this February
0191 265 5510 kielderobservatory.org
Learn how award-winning astrophotographers take images of the night sky. Improvements in digital cameras have resulted in night sky photography becoming more popular, and now’s your chance to give it a go. Weather permitting, the evening will include informal practical photography sessions, the use of Kielder Observatory telescopes to observe the night sky and refreshments.
BEAR HUNT TRAIL
The Plotters’ Forest, Raby
We’re going on a bear hunt! For February half term, Raby are hosting a series of trails around the estate and you won’t want to miss this one in their fantastic Plotters’ Forest – an immersive outdoor playground in the Christmas Tree Plantation at Raby Castle. It promises to be fun for all the family.
THE SINGING MERMAID
Northern Stage, Newcastle
0191 230 5151
The singing mermaid is lured to join a travelling circus, with the promise of her own swimming pool and a better life. The circus audiences love her singing but she’s been tricked by the circus master. Will she ever escape? Expect fabulous music and puppets as this story comes to the stage.
This tale is told through the tools from a carpenter’s workshop. Pinocchio will be carved on stage, brushes will become a fox and the shadow of two saws will transform into a giant shark. Totally inventive, this show has something for all ages.
Theatre Royal, Newcastle
0191 232 7010
Children are leaving their teeth for the tooth fairy and waking up to find odd things under their pillows, and Alfie and Gabz are determined to get to the bottom of it. But they certainly didn’t expect to come face to face with the demon dentist. Don’t miss this hilarious tale from the West End producers of David Walliams’ Gangsta Granny and Billionaire Boy.
THE GRUFFALO COMES TO ALNWICK
Studio Hub, Alnwick Playhouse
Search for hazelnuts with Mouse, and meet Fox, Owl and Snake. Will the story of the terrifying Gruffalo save Mouse from ending up as dinner for these woodland creatures? Of course, there’s no such thing as a Gruffalo – is there? This performance is part of Alnwick Story Fest.
THE JUNGLE BOOK
Playhouse Whitley Bay
You’re invited to the jungle to join Mowgli and his friends on an adventure as they meet and attempt to outwit a slithering snake, cheeky monkeys, and the fierce tiger Shere Khan. Expect original music, audience interaction and lots of fun.
Seven Stories, Newcastle
Discover a world of wacky possibilities with acclaimed author-illustrator Nick Sharratt and his new book Unicorn Moonicorn. The original idea for this book was suggested to Nick by local schoolgirl Phoebe Tinkler, who will join Nick at this special event to talk about seeing her work brought to life by her favourite illustrator. It’s sure to be an inspirational event.
SCIENCE NOW! HUB: BUZZING ABOUT BEES
Life Science Centre, Newcastle
Bees are essential for the survival of our plants, people and the planet, but they’re under threat. Head to the Science Now! Hub to discover the trouble we’re causing them and to find out what scientists in the North East are doing to fix that. You can even take a sneak peek inside a bee lab where scientists train bees, and get a chance to share your ideas.