Great Exhibition of the North
Over the summer of 2018 Newcastle and Gateshead hosted the Great Exhibition of the North - 80 days of culture and events. My contribution was a LEGO Timeline of Northern Innovation - over 40 models representing what the North has done for the world! Held at the Mining Institute in central Newcastle - now the Common Room of the North - the exhibition welcomed over 34,000 visitors. In addition to my exhibition, there was a maker space where visitors young and old could release their creative skills!
Where to start with representing what the North of England has done for the world out of LEGO? The research stage took a while - the North is not short of candidates for world-changing technology and culture. Ultimately, the list was not particularly 'objective', and there was no need for it to be. I wanted it to be a starting point to keep people talking and building their own models, either in the maker space on site or at home. Visitors were encouraged to send in pictures of things I may have missed out!
The exhibition was chronological, starting with the industrial revolution, represented by Arkwright's spinning jenny and a coal mine. There was Stephenson's Rocket, the beginning of the Football Association, the first electric light bulb, Mecanno, Turbinia, the womens' rights movement, the Lovell Telescope, the Beatles, Mr Men, the Great North Run, Blade Runner, The Gateshead Millennium Bridge and the discovery of graphene.