En_counter Artwork

Below are examples of the work on display. Click the image for a larger version.


1. Nikki Whittle (2016) cARTography

This piece places en_counter in the wider context of recent exhibitions using maps as their theme. As you can see maps are highly adaptable objects, becoming tools for political statements, materials for clothing, and expressions of the self.


2. Jon Swords (2016) River Map

As part of the mapping project artist Ben Jones asked year eights at Walker Technology College to colour code maps of NewcastleGateshead according to how they felt about different places. Reviewing the maps revealed nearly 80% had coloured in the River Tyne signifying its importance in their lives. Stitching together extracts from the original maps, this meta-river attempts to represent the importance of the Tyne in the children’s geographical imaginations through scale and repetition.


3. Lovely Jojo (2014) Spaces of Homelessness

Produced for the ESRC Festival of Social Science 2014: “Imaging Homelessness in a City of Care”, Lovely Jojo’s map brings together the life-histories of 30 homeless people who participated in a project led by Adele Irving and Oliver Moss in the Department of Social Sciences and Languages at Northumbria University. The work seeks to highlight the spaces, places and experiences of homelessness and to give a greater voice to the homeless population, still largely marginalised from mainstream decision-making processes. See the project blog for more details.

4. Oliver Moss and Adele Irving (2015) Sounding Off

Sounding Off is an interactive sound-walk curated by Oliver Moss and Adele Irving. The aim of the sound-walk is to promote a more nuanced understanding of homelessness by gaining an insight in to these individuals’ pathways into – and, in some cases, out of – homelessness, as well as their experiences and concerns as homeless people. With the support of sound artist Rachael Hales the participants read their testimonies, which are blended and spliced with field recordings. These can be accessed using a QR code reader on your mobile phone. See the project blog for more details.

5. Space2 & produced by Nelly Stavropoulou (2015) It’s About Time

It’s About Time is the result of a community film-making workshop with a group of fifteen young people from Space2, enabling them to present their lives in NewcastleGateshead. The project was developed and delivered by Nelly Stavropoulou, Director of art and media charity, Bridge + Tunnel Voices.

Space2 was created by NE1 and run by the YMCA to support 13-18 year olds to find employment through coaching, experience and developing contacts.

Nelly Stavropoulou is a Leverhulme Trust PhD doctoral student at the School of Applied Social Sciences in Durham University investigating the role of community arts in promoting representation, self-expression and democratic participation for young refugees.


6. Space2 with Mike Jeffries (2016) World Map

The Space2 world map shows the connections of family and friends across the continents by Space2 clients on a typical afternoon united by one space in Newcastle.

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7. The pupils of the Royal Grammar School with Christine Egan-Fowler (2015) Maps of Gold

Made during a week of mapping workshops, the pupils of the Royal Grammar School students were asked to identify locations in NewcastleGateshead that were ‘precious’ to them. These areas were cut from the NewcastleGateshead “Walk” map and the journeys or places redacted with gold leaf simultaneously highlighting and obscuring them from view.



8. Euan Lynn (2015) Drawing

Skate-boarders rub wax onto the surfaces and edges of objects to make the surface slick enough to slide over. The residual wax leaves evidence of the hidden amenity in the object – the alternative functions – of this kerb, this bench, or that handrail, which can be read by other skater-boarders. Lynn encourages the participants to use the wax to highlight aspects of their environment they perceive as having alternative, potential use-values. By drawing attention to the unconscious markings left by skateboarders, participants gain a different understanding of the objects and materials by which we are surrounded.

9. Dad? with Paul Summers (2015-16) Skate Culture

Dad? are a group of skateboarders from Newcastle upon Tyne who have been working with poet Paul Summers. They are writing skate-culture poems, designing images, taking photos and making films which will culminate in a skate-culture exhibition at the Tyneside Cinema in June 2016. The project is part of New Writing North’s Young Writers’ City programme funded by Newcastle Culture Investment Fund.


10. Mike Jeffries (2016) Studentville

The studentville map is compiled from 27 individual maps made by final year geography students at Northumbria University. It captures the intense buzz of student life, swirling around the black hole of the library. The students’ experiences of Newcastle are intense but partial, whole neighbourhoods extensively colonised, explored on lost walks home, or never visited. The clichés of student life hide a much more personal, everyday world of suddenly needing milk, romantic dates and feeding pet snakes.


11. Mike Jeffries (2016) The Outskirts of Newcastle

This work explores where the city ends in a hinterland of lay-bys, out of town outlets and new build. The promise of bright futures carves out new territory, enclaves reclaiming the countryside from the unfamiliar and dangerous. There is no signal. Newcastle has barely begun to expand from the citadel hunkered down along the Tyne but between the great wastes of the uplands and the city’s control lies a wilderness ready to be conquered. This map records the limits of our knowledge, handing on the baton to future generations.


12. Jon Swords and Bruce Carlisle (2016) Topological Road Map

Using road data for Newcastle upon Tyne, Swords and Carlisle have created a new kind of map. Instead of mapping roads geospatially, they have mapped them topologically so the connections are maintained but locations are free to be manipulated. The roads that share connections have been pulled together and those that don’t have been pushed apart. Suburbs and coherent urban areas are grouped together and located in relation to one another. At first glance the map is discombobulating as time and space have been distorted. However, once you study it the places become recognisable as Newcastle. See here for more, and here  for a short academic article about the piece.