River Views Fill The Gallery

Published: 19th June 2018

Earlier the year received a grant from The Children’s Foundation. This money helped The Customs House run a creative project with our Treasure Group.

Young artists worked with artist David Wilkinson on a project ‘Painting the River’ for eight weeks. The children came each week for a session where they drew the River Tyne outside on the quayside and then from photographs. Working in their own series of small folded sketch books they progressed to making larger watercolour paintings surrounded by David’s exhibition, “Sea, Sky and River River” in our Upper Fusion Gallery.

The project aimed to help the young people gain confidence, develop a sense of belonging here at The Customs House, improve their art skills and overall sense of wellbeing.

Elizabeth Kane Learning Officer said,

“I am incredibly proud of the members of the group who worked hard to develop their drawing and painting skills. Each week we saw an improvement in their concentration. I think if you spend some time looking at their work you will recognise lots of familiar landmarks.”

The project culminated in an exhibition in The Customs House Gallery. This exhibition runs alongside The Takeover Open Exhibition until 31st August. If you visit take time to spot the Groyne, Conversation Piece (known locally as The Weebles), The Customs House and much more.

Painting The River

Elizabeth went on to say,

“The Customs House believes every young person should have the opportunity to enjoy the arts, be happy and safe. We know the arts really make a difference. One of the young artists confidence blossomed during the project. In week one this young man was very quiet. By the end he was visibly proud of his art and happy to talk to people about what he’d been doing. It was quite a transformation.

All the children left with a set of water colour paints and a brush. We hope this is just the start and they continue to draw and paint the world around them.”

How Can I find Out More?

The Children’s Foundation aims to improve the lives of young people tackling issues of distress, disability and disadvantage. You can find out more about The Children’s Foundation on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram follow #TCF.

The Treasure Group is the umbrella name for our work with Looked After Children. This work is only possible thanks to the support of funders like The Children’s Foundation.

We have previously been funded by the The Pyrus Trust and National Lottery funding, through the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF). We currently do not have funding in place to run a similar project. If you would like to donate to future projects with The Treasure Group please email Elizabeth@customshouse.co.uk

The Port of Tyne is proud to support The Customs House as a sponsor of projects which help young people gain confidence and skills towards employment.