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Sunderland gets involved in popular Museums at Night initiative

The joy of seeing museums at night is spreading to Wearside. Grace Scott sets aside her regular need for beauty sleep and signs up

Kristof Vrancken 2013 The National Glass Centre
The National Glass Centre

Museum and gallery visitors are being invited to see a trio of Sunderland’s cultural venues in a new light - twilight for the most part - this May as they make debut in the popular initiative Museums at Night. 

Taking place on the same night as the popular Late Shows in Newcastle Gateshead (see p12), Sunderland’s Museums at Night event will see the National Glass Centre, Sunderland Museum and Winter Gardens and the Northern Gallery for Contemporary Art hold off from locking up until well after normal hours as well as programming a collection of fun activities for all the family.

The event will be used to launch the National Glass Centre’s summer exhibition, Three Solo Shows Revised, which features the work of Mexican glass artists the De La Torre Brothers.

Ranging from hot glass to lenticular printing, the brothers’ vibrant work shows off their influences, which include traditional Mexican Folk Art, popular culture, art history and their Catholic upbringing.

A free Mexican Family Fun Day and Fiesta has been planned to suitably celebrate the exhibition, from 10am to 10pm. That’s a whole lot of fun, including Mexican-themed glass painting, storytelling and face painting, make your own pendant necklace workshops and glass blowing demonstrations by the De La Torre brothers themselves. In the evening the Mexican Fiesta - complete with traditional Mariachi band - will continue in the Centre’s brasserie, in a timely association with ¡VAMOS!

Over the river at Sunderland Museum and Winter Gardens, a War Games Family Night will be held from 6pm-8.30pm, with John Sadler’s Time Bandits doing a First World War drill, object handling, dress up and war horse tales.Sunderland Empire’s Shadow Horse Puppets workshop and the Jungle Survival Trail in the Winter Gardens with camouflage face-painting are sure to be highlights of the evening.

Meanwhile the Northern Gallery for Contemporary Art will also open late with an end-of-exhibition party from 4pm to 8pm. Celebrating the final day of their group exhibition, Stone, which is part of the AV Festival 2014, it includes contemporary works by leading figures including Gabriel Orozco and Harun Farocki alongside modern masters including the late American artist Dennis Oppenheim.


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Culture Editor
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