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Out There: Our Post-War Public Art: Bessie Surtees House


Out There: Our Post-War Public Art opens at Historic England’s Bessie Surtees House on 8 September 2016. Out There will shed light on the sculptures and structures created by pioneering artists between 1945 and 1985, long before the iconic Angel of the North was conceived. The exhibition will explore the role of the Festival of Britain, New Towns and commissioning in Newcastle and Gateshead as key to the story of public art in England.

England is home to a wealth of post-war public art, each piece with a fascinating story to tell. From the sculptures at Newcastle University and Civic Centre to the Apollo Pavilion at Peterlee, Out There will celebrate England's wonderful yet often-overlooked national collection of public art. While architecture from this brave and brutalist period has been reassessed and rediscovered by a new generation, much of the public art created alongside has been lost, damaged, moved or even destroyed. Lost works will be highlighted in the hope that someone ‘out there’ will know their whereabouts or fate.

Out There will examine the aspirations, role, design, commissioning and legacy of sculptural art for public spaces and buildings. Bringing art out of the galleries and into the public realm was all part of a utopian ideal forged during the reconstruction of post-war Britain. They were designed by artists to create a sense of shared experience, possibility, and hope for the future.

Part of Heritage Open Days.


Essential Details




8th September 2016 - 31st March 2017

Venue Details
With an incredibly rich history, these two five-storey houses are not only fine examples of 16th and 17th century Jacobean architecture but a great historical site right on Newcastle Quayside.  Sandhill was once a bustling commercial center of activ...


0191 269 1200

[email protected]


41-44 Sandhill
Newcastle upon Tyne

Opening Hours:

Monday 10am - 4pm
Tuesday 10am - 4pm
Wednesday 10am - 4pm
Thursday 10am - 4pm
Friday 10am - 4pm
Saturday: Closed
Sunday: Closed

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