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Sting’s Newcastle painting at the Laing

Other posts by  |  Sheelagh Caygill on Google+ |  January 9, 2012 | 1 Comment
Northern City Renaissance, Newcastle, England, by Stephen Hancock

Northern City Renaissance, Newcastle, England, by Stephen Hancock

A painting of the River Tyne commissioned by Sting and rendered by one of America’s top contemporary artists, is to go on show at the Laing Art Gallery from January 21.

Previously displayed at the Laing a few years ago, the renowned painting, Northern City Renaissance, Newcastle, England by Stephen Hannock, depicts a view of the River Tyne as it is today, with the Sage Gateshead, BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art and the Millennium Bridge.

Partially hidden from sight under the layers of paint are images and text relating to the city’s mining heritage.

Stephen Hannock is an artist whose work hangs in some of America’s most prestigious museums and galleries.  Northern City Renaissance celebrates the cultural and economic regeneration of Newcastle since the closure of the coal mines and shipyards, including scenes from the Laing Art Gallery’s collection.

Julie Milne, curator of the Laing Art Gallery, said: “Sting greatly appreciates and collects Stephen Hannock’s work and commissioned this piece to celebrate his home town. It was fitting that the first public viewing of the painting took place here at the Laing a few years ago – the home of so many important paintings about and of the North East. We are delighted to be able to show it to the public once again.”

Stephen said: “In many ways Newcastle is the ‘everyman’ of post-industrial cities. The cultural resurgence currently underway is truly inspiring.”

Stephen’s paintings have often been described as ‘luminous’, partly due to his technique of polishing successive layers of paint. He works within a tradition of 19th century American painters such as Thomas Cole and Frederic Edwin Church, known collectively as the Hudson River School. These in turn took inspiration from British masters such as J M W Turner and John Constable.

Stephen was awarded an Academy Award for Special Effects for his work on more than 100 paintings used to create images of heaven and hell in the film What Dreams May Come, starring Robin Williams and Cuba Gooding Jr.  The artist is represented by Marlborough Gallery in New York and London.

The Laing Art Gallery is open from 10am to 5pm Monday to Saturday and 2pm to 5pm on Sundays. Admission is free.

Sting with Stephen Hannock's painting at the Laing Art Gallery


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