Last weekend the 13th and 14th May was The Late Shows 2016 Newcastle/Gateshead's ultimate weekend of after-hours culture. And this year marked it's 10th annual event with over 70 arts, culture and heritage venues taking part. Venues that are normally closed after hours open their doors from 7-11pm and welcome you in to experience what they have on offer and all are completely free!
I usually instantly head straight for the Ouseburn area (you can read about last years event here). However this time around I decided to check out the other side of town and first stop was Commercial Union House on Pilgrim Street. Here you will find a multifunctional space for artist, performers, workshops and so much more all under one roof.
On the 6th floor I met Amy Jones of The Artwear Emporium. It was a nice surprise to see Amy as I went to Uni with her way back when I was studying Fine Art. Unfortunately I had to take time out from studying due to chronic illness but it was fantastic to see that Amy was working within the creative industry. She is a Costume Maker, Artwear Designer and Installation Artsit, check out more of her work here.
Above is the work of Chris Folwell aka Dabble Dabble. Chris was doing printing making workshops on the evening and you could create your very own spaceship! I have known Chris for many years I first met him and his lovely girlfriend Simone at the Make & Mend Market held at Newcastle Grainger Market. He is a screen printing wizard!
After Commercial Union House my next port of call was the wonderful Glamorous Owl on High Bridge. The Glamorous Owl is a unique gift shop showcasing the work of over 80 local artists and designers including Dizzy Miss James. Above is the work of Glass Artist Lauren Wilson who had a pop up stall on the night selling her wares.
Paul Goldsmith author of Visions of Newcastle was painting in-hous creating this beautiful watercolour portrait.
Heading upstairs of The Glamorous Owl it was jammed packed with people waiting for Ring Making and Origami Workshops.
My last stop for the evening was the marvellous Whosit & Whatsit on Sandhill, Newcastle Quayside also another stockist of DMJ and a pretty awesome shop. On the first floor you could meet the WHO behind the WHAT with a selection of the designers available for you to chat to and watch them in action. Above Aissa Anderson of the Beast Couture was customising greetings cards with whatever you wanted and she had produced the 'Wey-Aye Aye Man!' print exclusively for the event.
And lastly I got to meet the delightful Kingsley Nebechi . I first came across his work when he collaborated with Anyforty on their Seven range. We had a good little chat while he was drawing the above bit of awesomeness.
The Late Shows is an annual event held over two days however it is impossible to see everything in that time. You need to check out the lineup in advance and plan what you want to see. I'd highly recommend checking it out even if its not something you'd usually go to. It's a fantastic experience for all ages! Overall I had a brilliant evening I got to meet creatives, got involved in workshops and got to explore new places.
Will you be visiting next year?