Review: Ushering In – Kate Liston

Following the demolishment of The NewBridge Project’s space on Newbridge Street and the subsequent replacement with Hadrian’s Teepee – it produces more revenue and thus is seemingly justified – I stand shivering outside the new home to Newcastle’s emergent artists on New Market Street.

The reason for the shivering was my inability to research thoroughly, realise that Kate Liston’s show is by appointment only, and was waiting for Newcastle University alumni and co-founder of GOLDTAPPED gallery Juliet Fleming to courteously cycle over to permit my entrance.

In what was once an old electricity building, and retaining many of its grandiose and gothic features such as decadent staircase and marble walls, GOLDTAPPED’s home resides on the first floor of Carliol House, with The NewBridge Project’s studio spaces and communal room situated behind. Just one room in the building, Juliet details how her and i o u a e founder Stacey Davidson felt the unexploited space had lain dormant too long, begging to be occupied.

Fitting with GOLDTAPPED’s efforts to represent predominantly female artists in a world in which they are aggressively overlooked, (see Michol Hebron’s posterised response to this at Starless Midnight, BALTIC) Kate Liston’s Ushering In does just that – the pastel peaches, lilacs, pinks and yellows an oasis in the gloom. A response to the building’s past and present, Liston used wall painting, text and corner chairs to transform the room, recurring motifs such as the hexagons mimicking hexagonal details in the building’s banister. The text written outside the main room was hard to decipher and not obvious that it was part of the main installation; however, the totally immersive main room provides insight into how Carliol House lends itself to the arts, whilst juxtaposing with the exposed original flooring, making it something of a visual journey through time.

Definitely worth a see – but remember to book!

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