This page shows the alumni of the Tees Valley Arts organisation in the year 2013 and the years that they had served here.
This page shows the alumni of the Tees Valley Arts organisation in the year 2015 and the years that they had served here.
This page shows the alumni of the Tees Valley Arts organisation in the year 2016 and the years that they had served here.
TVA, which is committed to the impact of art for individuals and communities across North East England, has appointed a renowned local arts practitioner with an international network as its new Director and CEO.
James Beighton, an arts scholar and curator from Saltburn-on-Sea, will lead us forward, replacing long-serving CEO Rowena Sommerville. James worked as Senior Curator at the prestigious Plus-Tate gallery the Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art (mima) for 12 years where his role included securing the funding, planning and staging a far-reaching programme of world-renowned exhibitions from international contemporary artists as well as public engagement work both with visitors inside the gallery and out in the communities around Middlesbrough.
James left mima in 2014 to undertake a doctoral study examining the history of the visual arts in Teesside. During this time, he also established ‘New Linthorpe’ an exciting project with artist Emily Hesse to recapture the spirit of one of the most important artists in the Aesthetic Movement, Christopher Dresser, whose creations were realised in the Victorian kilns of Middlesbrough’s Linthorpe Art Pottery. Using local clay, the project created a new pottery collection while highlighting the town’s social history and inviting visitors to its exhibition and pottery-making workshops to explore the concept of locality.
In his new role as Director of TVA James will be working with artists and makers across all art forms – from visual arts, to music, to performance. He will work closely with funding, business and public service partners to engage diverse audiences across the Teesside community and address issues including environment, heritage, health and wellbeing, poverty, crime & justice, addiction, and asylum – often working with some of the region’s most vulnerable residents. TVA partners the likes of Teesside University, the Ministry of Justice, the NHS, and environmental agencies, but is also supporting the ambitions of the Tees Valley Combined Authority to bid for UK City of Culture 2025 and working closely to align its work with the strategy of Arts Council England and other key national government and funding partners.
“This is a truly exciting time to be involved with the arts in Tees Valley. I believe that art and culture form a fundamental part of everybody’s lives. It is a force for good in the world, helping to break down barriers, build confidence and aspiration and capturing the energy and pride of our region’s diverse communities. It’s a privilege to be able to continue my career with an organisation like Tees Valley Arts in a part of the world that I think of as home and I look forward to working with all of the partners and artists to extend TVA’s impact in the years ahead.”
The Chairman of TVA’s Board of Trustees, Richard Anderson, welcomed James’ appointment:
“We are delighted to have secured someone of James’ calibre with such a strong reputation in the arts regionally, nationally and internationally. His work at mima, throughout the TATE gallery network, his PhD study and his inspirational work as an arts practitioner in our region will inform his work as Director, building on the impressive legacy of impact and reach led by Rowena Sommerville and our current team.”
James will take up post from the 1 August, working from TVA’s office at Royal Middlehaven House in Middlesbrough.
164 individual engagements, 90 plates made
that’s just the first of five community launches planned for the River Tees Rediscovered Landscape Partnership.
River Tees Rediscovered Willow Pattern Plates
Working with Middlesbrough born artist Emily Hesse, regular Tees Valley Arts contributor and artist Adrian Moule, we facilitated a collaboration that created the River Tees Rediscovered Willow Pattern Plate engagement.
By reflecting on the long history of pottery production in the Tees Valley and, in particular, its instrumental role in the development of Middlesbrough as a town through the establishment of the Middlesbrough Pottery in 1831. We provided the means to create an artistic intervention that would enable people to both express themselves and create something intrinsically useful.
The Willow Pattern is a distinctive and elaborate pattern developed by Thomas Minton in around 1790 and was an English imitation of Chinese porcelain imported during the mid-eighteenth century. Mostly blue and white, though other colours were used, it always featured both a river, a bridge and a person.
Examples of the pottery, with the willow pattern, produced by Middlesbrough Pottery are important enough to be included in the collection of the Victoria and Albert Museum:
Emily and Adrian wanted people to realise their memories, their vision, their thoughts of the river, whilst creating something they could take home and eat off.
We were fortunate enough to have a genuine Middlesbrough Pottery plate on hand to give inspiration to the participants thanks to the generous support of project volunteer James Beighton, former senior curator of mima and ceramics expert, who is currently undertaking a AHRC funded PhD at Teesside University.
Participants were encouraged to draw out their ideas on paper with printed circles, with photographs of plates made earlier by Emily and Adrian to use for inspiration before going on to mark their own plate with porcelain paint pens:
Couldn’t Make It? See what we got up to:
Roll on the launch in South Park, Darlington, this Sunday, 11-3, where we hope to better our engagement numbers and let people think and realise their vision of the river in blue and white.
- Ropner Park, Stockton / Saturday 28th February, 11-3pm;
- Ward Jackson Park, Hartlepool / Saturday 14th March, 11-3pm