Artwork reaching the clouds

Matt Blyth, audience development officer for Arts Centre Washington with the work by Aiden Moesby for the Word Cloud exhibition. Below,  Mackem Word Cloud by Paul Swinney.

Matt Blyth, audience development officer for Arts Centre Washington with the work by Aiden Moesby for the Word Cloud exhibition. Below, Mackem Word Cloud by Paul Swinney.

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What does the North East mean to you?” – that was the question posed to artists as part of the Word Cloud display.

The answer is revealed in art works that include text in different forms, as the gallery at Arts Centre Washington becomes a blank parchment around which word clouds are formed
Inspired by the arrival of the Lindisfarne Gospels

Also in celebration of Sunderland’s 21st year of city status, artists from across the region were invited to submit their very own word clouds in response to the question about what the region means to them.

Of the submissions, six artists were selected who have produced work in a variety of forms from digital art, installation, sculpture, printmaking and illustration.

The six artists taking part are Sylvia Lynch, Ira Lightman, Aidan Moesby, Paul Swinney, Tommy Anderson, and Paul Belcher.

Sylvia Lynch combines printmaking and illustration to make hand lettered embossed text, which delicately portrays the emotion in her work.

Ira Lightman collected data from Wikipedia articles relating to 40 towns and villages in the North East. Through colour schemes, alignments and fonts, he looped a simulation of literal word clouds across screens in the gallery.

Through the addition of his work, entitled Tempus Fugit (Time flies), Paul Belcher explores the circular movements of life itself and how nature mixes with industrial environments, creating interesting contrasts. His paintings reflect an eclectic mix of interests from nature itself, film, steam punk and literature.

Tommy Anderson is a photographer who captures the visual language and temporal nature of signage, notices and hand-made marks from across the North East region. After moving away from the area for university, Paul Swinney became much more aware of the uniqueness of Mackem words and phrases.

Although this local dialect isn’t as celebrated as much as others, he became inspired to celebrate Sunderland’s cultural identity through design.

Meanwhile, Aidan Moesby focuses on memory and identity from both a cultural and personal viewpoint. Remaining fascinated by how we communicate and connect, he produces text-based responsive interventions which serve as a catalyst for personal and communal exploration through engaging conversation.

Throughout June and July the gallery will be displaying Mini Word Clouds, from its Mix Up and Pick and Mix youth art groups upstairs in the Granary.

* Word Cloud runs at Arts Centre Washington until September.