THE WHEELS are in motion for a quirky arts project which will see a caravan-cum-art gallery roll into Sunderland.
From March to April, a yellow caravan will be popping up in a host of unexpected places across the city, in a bid to bring art to people’s doorsteps.
It will kick off a two-year tour of the country by artists Jan Williams and Chris Teasdale who will be exhibiting photography in the 1969 caravan.
The mobile gallery will run in tandem with an exhibition at Northern Gallery for Contemporary Art (NGCA), in Fawcett Street, and a pop-up arts space which will invite Wearsiders to express their love of their home city through art.
Kathryn Brame from NGCA said: “Chris and Jan have this caravan which they take out to areas of towns and cities that aren’t engaging with the arts.
“As well as being an exhibition space, it’s like a living room. They give out teas and coffees and people can come in for a chat.
“The artists already have a great relationship with the gallery, and have exhibited here before, which is why they decided to start the tour here.”
She added: “Over the course of the caravan visits here, which will take place over six sites, they hope to host around 3,000 guests to discuss their own and their guests’ representation of city life through photography, and how the camera lens enables us to imagine what we value – or fail to.
“Jan and Chris are fantastic and have a great sense of humour. They’ve been running the Caravan Gallery since 2000 and their photographs really capture the sense of humour found in each place they visit.”
As part of their time in the city, the artists will also take over a derelict shop in the city centre in April to create a central hub. It will be the base for a Pride of Place Project.
They’ll be asking people what they love about Sunderland and asking them to display their memories, artworks and mementoes on the walls of the makeshift gallery and workshop space.
Kathryn said: “It will be a place for exhibiting artwork and mementos from the people of Sunderland, a workshop space and a place for local artists to work – essentially anything goes as long as it celebrates Sunderland!
“It’s all about embracing the city and community and providing a place for people to come together and form new partnerships.
“They’ve been to lots of different places and often it’s a way of invigorating the arts, often people continue with the art and partnerships after the artists have left.”
The exhibition at NGCA will see the artists’ photographic work, depicting social change in Britain since the Millennium, displayed throughout the building and will run from March 6 - May 1.