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The Travelling Pavilion goes on tour by Karen Johnston

Thursday 27th July 2017

The Pavilion project launched on April 28th where volunteers and visitors could meet the artist Toby Paterson and quiz him on his structure. The Pavilion is designed to be entirely collapsible so that it can be easily transported from each site. The art installation piece is a collaboration between the Laing and Hatton Art Galleries which hopes to promote the re-opening of the Hatton Gallery later this year.

The idea of the temporary structure showcases original posters from previous exhibitions and shows the versatility and development that the Hatton will inevitably go through. Volunteers manage the crafting activity and ensure the structure is properly maintained. With each team of volunteers, a new poster is pasted over an existing image or applied over the coloured blocks to create an ever-changing exhibition. Hopefully, if the same visitors come to view the Pavilion, they will see a new art exhibition each time. So, the Pavilion will present something new to look at and discuss. As the exhibition has only been live for a few weeks, the posters are slowly starting to fill out the structure. When the time comes to dismantle it, however, I am sure there will be more posters in place to showcase this unusual idea.

Although the Pavilion was constructed on Friday 28th April, the exhibition did not officially go live until the Saturday. Currently, the Pavilion sits adjacent to Baltic Art Gallery which has been a prime location for visitors. On opening day, there were live parkour displays from local company, Apeuero Parkour. This event was especially popular with the public as it was completely different from any event they had ever seen. Throughout the day, there was a live Jazz piece from Newcastle University which created an ambient accompaniment alongside the displayed artwork. As a volunteer it has been a great project to be involved in as you get the opportunity to interact with so many different people.

On site, there is a small craft area which encourages families (and adults) to create their own Pavilion structure using a random selection of materials. The activity is not too dissimilar to the training session that took place at the Hatton where volunteers had to make structures using potatoes and garden canes. The craft has provided so much fun, and, as it is free and a little bit silly, everyone can get involved.

Situated in Baltic Square, the Hatton Pavilion is currently positioned in a fantastic location alongside the quayside. On Saturday 6th May volunteers were lucky enough to witness the live boat race between Durham and Newcastle Universities. The event had a huge turn out with people viewing from the Millennium Eye Bridge cheering both sides on. The sportsmanship displayed by the general public was wonderful to see. A 1500m race that began at the Redheugh Bridge and surpassed the Millennium Eye Bridge, was particularly tense. The races took place between; beginners, intermediates and the female and male teams from both levels. It is not the winning that counts but the taking part (but I think Newcastle University won most of the races, go team)! Although the weather was not especially warm, the amount of people that turned up to support was incredible. Many willingly got involved in the activities that were provided where they could learn how to row and try to beat the distance record.

I am proud to have been a part of this project so far and look forward to any more surprise events that might be planned nearby the Pavilion.

The Pavilion will still be erected at Baltic Square for the Late Shows so if you missed Apeuero Parkour and the Jazz Music, be sure to visit the Pavilion on Saturday 20th May where there will be live performances around the structure throughout the night.

 

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