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Online Exhibition: Art Deco by the Sea

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Art Deco By the Sea Cleethorpes design for Railway Poster Septimus Scott c1930 Laing Art Gallery Newcastle

Laing Art Gallery continues to be closed due to the ongoing restrictions around Covid-19. Their new Art Deco By the Sea exhibition is now available to browse as a virtual exhibition with interesting additional content narrated by the Newcastle-based art gallery's curator, Sarah Richardson.

Art Deco by the Sea at Newcastle’s Laing Art Gallery is the first major exhibition to explore how the Art Deco-style transformed the British seaside during the 1920s and 30s. The new exhibition will be on display at the city centre art gallery from 17 October 2020 until 27 February 2021.

Art Deco by the Sea explores the concept of unfaded seaside glamour, celebrating a time when this distinctive style of art, architecture and design transformed the British seaside.

During the 1920s and 30s, Art Deco became synonymous with leisure and pleasure, especially as existing coastal destinations and transport networks were modernised, while new resorts were established to meet the needs of the dawn of mass tourism.

The exhibition at Laing Art Gallery consists of more than 150 works drawn from public and private collections across the UK, including paintings, posters, brochures, drawings, photographs, fashion, furniture, ceramics and textiles. Art Deco by the Sea was originally created by The Sainsbury Centre at the University of East Anglia, Norwich. In Newcastle, the show has been redeveloped to include works from the Laing collection.

The exhibition will celebrate iconic examples of seaside architecture, from the Midland Hotel in Morecambe to Edinburgh’s famous Portobello Lido. Posters produced for several railway companies will show the relationship between these companies and the destinations they were promoting. In The Four Streamliners (Tom Purvis, 1937, National Railway Museum) – depicting a group of aerodynamic trains and the cities that they were destined for, including Newcastle – the tagline readsAll For Your Further Comfort’ but the greater inference is, arguably, speed.

Art Deco by the Sea was originally created by The Sainsbury Centre at the University of East Anglia, Norwich. In Newcastle, the show has been redeveloped to include works from the Laing collection.

Image: Cleethorpes, design for Railway Poster, Septimus Scott, c1930, Laing Art Gallery, Newcastle

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