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Hospital exhibition for Blyth’s budding artists

Wednesday, 25 July, 2018
Hospital exhibition for Blyth’s budding artists

A new photographic exhibition featuring the work of budding artists of the future has been unveiled at Blyth Community Hospital.

Seeing Things Differently is an arts-based research project funded by the Paul Hamlyn Foundation that tests whether photography can support the teaching of creative writing in schools.

Designed by The Forge, an Arts Council National Portfolio organisation specialising in participatory arts programmes with children, it is the result of a partnership with two artists – photographer Madeleine Waller and writer Carina Rodney – and staff at Bede Academy.

The photographs on display at the hospital were produced by Year 6 children from Bede Academy as part of project with Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust’s Bright charity. Working closely with the artists, the children developed a range of creative skills across both artforms.

Beverley Briggs, The Forge’s creative producer, is delighted that the partnership has enabled the children’s work to be shared with their wider community.

She said: “The images the children have taken are very powerful and really do help the viewer ‘see things differently’. They give the viewer a real sense of the hidden beauties of Blyth, or of the joys and vitality of childhood.

“By exhibiting the children’s work in the hospital corridors, we are not only giving hospital visitors access to these wonderful images, we are also letting the children know that they themselves are the budding artists of tomorrow.”

Alan Richardson, chairman of Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, who opened the exhibition, said: “We’re passionate about nurturing young artistic talent and involving the community in our hospitals.

“We’re really pleased to be part of this exciting project which, through art, has brought groups of people together and produced these wonderful photos for everyone visiting our hospital to enjoy.

“I’d like to thank everybody who has made this exhibition happen and the volunteers who give their time in the shop to raise funds for Blyth hospital and make projects like this one possible.”

Phoebe Hall, teacher at Bede Academy, said: “The students have greatly enjoyed the project, producing some stunning images, as well as their own pieces of poetry and prose.

“The exhibition at Blyth Community Hospital has been an excellent opportunity for students to see their work displayed publicly and the impact it can have on the local community. Similarly, it has instilled a huge sense of pride in all involved, helping to develop skills that will last a lifetime.”

For the past 15 years, the trust’s Bright charity has funded the development of an award-winning healing arts programme which uses art as as a therapeutic medium to improve the hospital environment for patients, visitors and staff.

To find out more about the project, visit The Forge’s website: