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24 Apr 2009 - 22 May 2009

We are delighted to bring together an exhibition that poses questions about our relationship with the ethical and the political. This exhibition acknowledges the contribution that the community brings to those ideas.

Banners from a community workshop in Durham remind us of issues won, lost and forgotten which provide a link between 80's and 90's political activism and the political in the art of Bob and Roberta Smith. The well known artist Bob and Roberta Smith has agreed to show his street banner LOVE or HATE alongside a series of beautiful banners made at Lotte Shankland's community workshop in Durham.

Sharron Lea documents political action at the G8 Summit, Gleneagles, 2005. Work consists of a series of photographs taken from within the street protest at Gleneagles.

Dick Ward's large-scale cartoon in Gateshead Hospital offers another political story including the Jarrow March. Dick's working drawings are explored alongside a video of this celebrated peoples' mural. The Politics and People exhibition in Gallery North, runs alongside Dick Ward's exhibition: A Story for Children and Others, showing in Gallery North Project Space, 24 April-22 May. Dick Ward uses cartoon images to tell a story.

Political paintings are also exhibited by Northumbria Graduate Ian Gonczarow presently studying at Goldsmiths College.

Exhibition curated by Gallery Director Helen Baker.

Lotte Shankland, 2009:

"The creative process of painting a banner is often the joyful opposite of the negative causes that inspire them. This is particularly the case with collaborative banners, where being part of a group with a common aim is the empowering starting point for the kind of public debate that banners are part of. They belong in market places, on marches, demonstrations, outside factories, embassies, parliament, and are a basic expression of, and even a precondition for, a true democracy."