There is a new kid on the block of creative studios and I am lucky enough to have a space there. The new studio is called Eleventh Avenue and guess where it is… that’s right its on Eleventh Avenue North. None of this would have been possible without the arts organisation East Street Arts. ESA are based in Leeds and have in many ways come to my rescue. My beloved Shed closed down earlier this year and as you can imagine when your place of business is no longer available this can make for an amazingly stressful and challenging time.
Most of us had nowhere to go and only a month to find an alternative studio space. Along came ESA to save the day. They provided one space in Gateshead town center which suited most of The Shed residents, but for me wasn’t quite right. The second space could be found on the treasure trove that is the Team Valley trading estate in Gateshead. It may sound strange to hear an artist say that they are quite at home on an industrial estate. But to be honest I have always been fascinated by the amazing businesses, suppliers and wholesalers that can be found here.
So I found myself alone in a very large office space on the Team valley moving all of my stuff in. I had more room than I knew what to do with, and very quickly decided that the ground floor (yes I have two floors of space!!) should be a gallery, a showcase space if you will. And upstairs should be the studio space. This is something that I have wanted for a while, to allow the work I produce to be shown with the right amount of space and in the right environment.
So here I am nearly 6 months on. There are now four artists in the space Sam Chorley, Terri Miles and Keith Murdoch. We have a website, a banner, kettles, heating, a facebook page, twitter profile, virtual assistant called Helen (Nature) Eve and our open studios is coming up very shortly. We have all worked so hard to make Eleventh Avenue a success. And I have a feeling that this is just the beginning of an amazing journey for this studio and all that sale in her.