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Artist curates exhibition of African art at library; Black History Month is being marked in Newcastle with a special exhibition.

NEWCASTLE City Library will mark October - designated Black History Month - with an exhibition of African art curated by Cumbrian artist Paul Hardcastle.

The exhibition is on behalf of regional African arts and heritage group organisation Waka Waka Africa North East.

The display of artefacts, fabrics, books and photographs has as its centrepiece an unusual installation depicting an African wedding procession, by river canoe, with supporting photographs and sculptures.

Hardcastle, who lives and has his studio in Hallbankgate, Brampton, Cumbria has lived and worked in East and West Africa, and the materials, landscape and peoples of the continent profoundly influence much of his work.

He says: "Blending sculptural and figurative relief into tiles, murals and mosaic is a joy. Rich colours and surface texture, vibrant design and a sense of scale all have their part to play."

The exhibition of Hardcastle's work also includes four stained glass pieces reflecting African landscape and village life, a colourful rug and a selection of other figurative work that he has created or collected.

Paul co-curated the African art exhibition at Newcastle Arts Centre in May and June of this year, and is currently also exhibiting at Creative Fine Arts in Beverley, North Yorkshire, where he was commissioned to create a piece for the opening of the gallery last year.

He has had a one-man exhibition in the gallery at Unity Theatre, Liverpool and exhibited at Gallery 1611 in Alston and many more.

Black History Month has been marked in the UK since 1976, and this year is the 50th anniversary of the famous "We Have A Dream" speech by Martin Luther King - a seminal moment in the history of the civil rights movement.

The exhibition at the City Library is accompanied by access for the public to the Waka Waka Africa North East website, including music from renowned African performers and a number of interesting interviews with local links.

These include a Martin Luther King speech at Newcastle University in November 1967.

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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)
Date:Oct 2, 2013
Words:333
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