Workplace Foundation is delighted to present Women Artists of the North East Library, an evolving exhibition documenting and exploring how North East women artists past and present are influencing the art world.
Women Artists of the North East Library is an artist-led project that brings together donated material, including: books, art, images, letters, oral histories and music, to form a usable resource that contributes to the history of women artists working in the region. The Library was initiated by recent graduates Holly Argent & Rene McBrearty in 2017 and is currently hosted by The Northern Charter in Newcastle.
Throughout Great Exhibition of The North the library will be resident at Workplace Foundation in Gateshead and available to the public as an evolving exhibition, library, and platform for events and discussions aimed at repositioning the role and influence of women artists not just on the North East and the wider North, but on the international art world.
Building on previous public and private events initiated by the library including open library days, walks and a one day residency at BALTIC Library and Archive, the project in Gateshead will, for the first time, include exhibited work by artists referenced in the library from emerging talent and mid-career artists through to established artists and key historical figures. Alongside loaned artworks will be further documentation from exhibitions by women artists that have been a key influence on the young artists working in the region today.
The project will be expanded with further events including talks, discussions, workshops and performances.
At the mid point of the project at Workplace Foundation key elements will be repositioned in a parallel exhibition curated by George Vasey at CGP Gallery in London giving the project and the artists involved an immediate platform in the capital.
Throughout the project artists and the public will be invited to nominate Women artists and donate material that they think should be added to the Library.
The Women Artists of the North East Library at Workplace Foundation is curated by Holly Argent in conversation with George Vasey, Café Gallery Projects, London and Workplace Foundation, Gateshead.
Holly Argent graduated from Newcastle University in 2017. She is an artist and active member of artist-led studios The Northern Charter. She set up The Women Artists of the North East Library in 2017 and organises events, screenings and readings that give visibility to female artists active across the North East. Her practice explores archives and historical material through moving image, text, collage, and drawing. Recently she presented work at Studio is Sudden (January 2018) with Giles Bailey and CIRCA Projects and was awarded the Forshaw Rome Residency from Newcastle University (July 2017) at The British School at Rome.
George Vasey is a curator and writer. He is currently a Teaching Fellow in Curating at Newcastle University and curator at BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art in Gateshead. He curated the Turner Prize 2017 at Ferens Arts Gallery, Hull. In 2016-2017 he is lead mentor on Syllabus II, an alternative educational platform for artists set up by Wysing Arts Centre, S1, New Contemporaries, Spike Island, Studio Voltaire and Eastside Projects. His writing has appeared in Art Monthly, Art Review, Apollo, Burlington and Frieze. In 2013, he was writer in residence at Jerwood Space, London. Recent independent projects include These Rotten Words (Chapter Arts Centre, Cardiff, 2017), Blend the Acclaim of your Chant with the Timbrels (Jerwood Space, London, 2016) and Eric Bainbridge: Potholes Drawings 1981 – 2015, (Workplace, London, 2016), Jo Spence & Alexis Hunter (Richard Saltoun, London, 2013) and A Small Hiccup (Grand Union, Birmingham, 2013). He studied BA Fine Art at Newcastle University and MA Curating at Goldsmiths. From 2014 to 2016 he was curator at Northern Gallery for Contemporary Art, Sunderland and has previously worked in public, artist-led and commercial galleries in education and curatorial roles.