DOZENS of paintings depicting scenes from the borough’s past have gone on display online.
North Tyneside Council has been forced to turn to the internet to put the pictures on show after running out of exhibition space on the walls of its public buildings.
A total of 70 oil paintings owned by the council are featured on the BBC’s Your Paintings website as part of an initiative by the Public Catalogue Foundation to put all the UK’s estimated 200,000 oil paintings in public ownership on display online.
The council now has more than 220 paintings in its collection, and it is considering setting up its own website to display them all.
Among the artists featured on the BBC website are Bernard Benedict Hemy, George Blackie Sticks, Robert Jobling and Samuel Dowell, all famous for their paintings of the North Tyneside coastline in the late 1800s to early 1900s.
Glynis Barrie, the council’s cabinet member for leisure, culture and tourism, said: “This is an excellent project, which I’m delighted we’ve been able to support.
“The council has more than 220 paintings in its collection, including some real gems, but we don’t have the space to put them all on display.
“The Your Paintings website means that local residents – and, indeed, anyone anywhere in the world who is interested – can see images of the paintings and find out more about them.
“We are working on our own website as well, so the rest of our collection can be made available online.”
To view the paintings, visit www.bbc.co.uk/yourpaintings and search for North Tyneside in the ‘galleries and collections’ menu.
North Tyneside paintings in other collections – such as those of Newcastle’s Laing Art Gallery, Newcastle University and South Shields and Hartlepool’s museums – can also be seen on the website.
Ten of the North Tyneside Council-owned paintings can also be seen in the flesh in an exhibition at Wallsend’s Segedunum museum on until Sunday, April 15.
The exhibition, called Cullercoats: An Artists’ Colony by the Sea, celebrates the period between 1870 and 1920 when the fishing village was one of the most important centres for artistic activity in the country.
Opening times for the exhibition are 10am to 3pm on weekdays and, from next month, 10am to 5pm daily. For details, visit www.twmuseums.org.uk/segedunum or call (0191) 236 9347.