Sunderland’s artists championed at city’s latest cultural showcase

From left, artists Jessica Browne, Jo Howell, organiser Barrie West, Kath Price and Denise Dowdeswell.
From left, artists Jessica Browne, Jo Howell, organiser Barrie West, Kath Price and Denise Dowdeswell.
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The work of 20 artists is to fill a city centre spot as they showcase Wearside’s creativity.

Sunderland Indie is set to welcome visitors to Mackie’s Corner, which is being used as a cultural space as work continues on the long-term plans for the building.

A piece which will be put on show as part of the 2020 Vision event.

A piece which will be put on show as part of the 2020 Vision event.

It was bought earlier this year by Henry Kirtley and his daughter Alex, who are drawing up proposals for the Hutchinson Buildings on High Street West.

Suggestions so far include shops on the ground floor, a distillery and brewery for the basement and an aparthotel for the upper floors.

Visitors can call into the former sweet shop on the corner, where the team of artists will put on work for around six weeks in a project backed by Sunderland Culture.

Last year it secured £1.25million of National Lottery funding from the Great Place Scheme, a joint fund from Arts Council England and Heritage Lottery Fund to put arts, culture and heritage at the heart of communities.
The display, called 2020 Vision, will feature 20 artists who work in a range of mediums, from paint and pencil to installations and sculpture.

What we are trying to do with this exhibition is to unsurface work, because in Sunderland there’s quite a thriving artistic community.

Barrie West

Among those whose work will appear is Barrie West, who has selected a number of paintings for the show based on his interpretation of global conflicts.

He said: “What we are trying to do with this exhibition is to unsurface work, because in Sunderland there’s quite a thriving artistic community.

“What Sunderland Indie is looking at is to try and make a lot of noise about that, showing that we’re here and making an exhibition of our work to show people just what we do.

“We’re going to put on 20 artists and each will show for about two weeks, and the show will last in total for about six weeks.

From left artists Jessica Browne, Jo Howell, Ken Devine, organiser Barrie West, Kath Price and Denise Dowdeswell, who are all taking part in the show.

From left artists Jessica Browne, Jo Howell, Ken Devine, organiser Barrie West, Kath Price and Denise Dowdeswell, who are all taking part in the show.

“We want to say a big ‘thank you’ to Sunderland Culture, which has really gone out on a limb at a time when money is very scarce and they have put a lot of faith in us.

“It will be quite something to see us all exhibit together, and there will be a lot for the public to come down and see and discover just who is creating art in the city.”

Other artists to feature will be Mark Peverley; Hester Dowling; Stephanie Smith; Jessica Browne; Dan Siberry; Alex Surtees; Lyn Whillians Killeen; Jo Howell; Rachel Brewin; Anna Glover; Dean Turnbull; George Browell; Anthony Barstow; Kath Price; Phil Barker; Padma Rao; Philip Wardle; Denise Dowdeswell and Shola Ola.

The space is expected to be open from 2pm to 5pm on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays until October 13, with further details available via its Facebook page.

A host of materials have been used to create artwork to go on show at Mackie's Corner.

A host of materials have been used to create artwork to go on show at Mackie's Corner.

The exhibition features the work of 20 artists.

The exhibition features the work of 20 artists.