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Creative students unveil the folklore of the Moors in new exhibition

ByDave Stopher

Jun 22, 2018

A unique two-part exhibition celebrating the artwork of talented Teesside University students will open on the North York Moors next month.

Teesside University Inspired (19 July to 28 August) will feature the work of fine art and concept art students, inspired by the landscape and folklore of the North York Moors and Tees Valley including stories of mythical serpents, magical witch hares and the legendary Gytrash, a black dog said to haunt the Moors.

The exhibition, which is also part of the Great Exhibition of the North’s ‘Inspired by’ programme, will be shown at the Inspired by… gallery at the Moors National Park Centre in Danby, North Yorkshire. It is split into two parts, with fine art students exhibiting from Thursday 19 July to Wednesday 8 August, and concept art students showing their work from Friday 10 August to Tuesday 28 August.

Lewis Robinson, Senior Lecturer in Fine Art at Teesside University, said: “Many of the students taking part in the exhibition were already working with themes of landscape, nature and the environment, but with the knowledge that they have now of this particular environment they are responding more directly.

“They are using such a wide variety of different media – there are sculptors, painters, printmakers, photographers, film-makers – which characterises the nature of fine art. It’s going to be really interesting and exciting to see that mix in one space.”

Nigel Kitching, Senior Lecturer in Concept Art, explained: “Concept art is about taking an idea and visualising it – the first step on the design of something like the recent film Blade Runner 2049, for instance, would be an artist creating images for the set designers and builders to work from.

“The students showing at the Inspired by… gallery are all studying what I believe is the only MA in concept art in the country, and certainly the longest-standing. We attract students from all over the world, including, recently, Bahrain, France, Croatia, China and Norway.”

The Inspired by… gallery hosts temporary exhibitions of work by contemporary artists and craftworkers who draw their inspiration from the landscape, life, light and colour of the North York Moors.

Gallery curator Sally Ann Smith said: “The North York Moors National Park is known worldwide for its glorious landscapes, but what’s perhaps less well known is its rich folklore and mythology.

“Using these themes of landscape and folklore, the students are presenting a body of work that stretches their creative talent and creates a new representation of the North York Moors.”

Teesside University Inspired is part of the wider Great Exhibition of the North – a free, summer-long event celebrating Northern England’s pioneering spirit. The Great Exhibition of the North includes a programme of exhibits, live performances, displays of innovation and new artworks.

For more information on the exhibition, visit getnorth2018.com.