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Curatorial Traineeship 2012-13: Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums

The National Gallery’s curatorial traineeships, launched in September 2011 and supported by the Art Fund, enable regional museums to nurture the next generation of curators.

In 2012-13, Tyne & Wear Archives and Museums was successful in its application to partner with the National Gallery to benefit from curatorial training. The National Gallery provided a trainee with mentoring and support to work with collections – both at the National Gallery and at Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums – with a focus on European paintings pre-1900.

Dr Nicholas Penny, Director of the National Gallery, said:

“We know that curatorial expertise in regional museums has been greatly reduced in recent years. We have joined forces with the Art Fund to do something to halt this decline and ensure that discerning and judicious collecting for regional collections and a deep understanding of what those collections already include continues in the future”.

The traineeship

At Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums, three collections of Old Master paintings are based at the Laing Art Gallery and the Hatton Gallery in Newcastle upon Tyne, and the Shipley Art Gallery in Gateshead. Together, the collections contain important North European paintings from the 14th to the early 18th centuries, and some significant Italian paintings from a similar period.

The focus for the trainee was to provide new knowledge and interpretation around these rarely seen paintings. The research then formed the basis of an exhibition at the Laing Art Gallery, which unlocked the collections for 21st-century audiences.  

The 2012-13 traineeship resulted in the display Divine Bodies  [External link], which is open 8 June – 29 September 2013 at Laing Art Gallery, Newcastle.

Read Curatorial Trainee Philippa Stephenson’s blog about her experiences with the traineeship [External link]

Find out more about Tyne & Wear Archives and Museums [External link]

Art Fund