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The Crack Magazine

bethan maddocks pic - The Twelfth Night Pie from A Northumberland Menagerie, by visual artist Bethan Maddocks.jpg

Bringing Animal Stories to Life

You can see Bethan Maddocks’ work in four different venues in Northumberland over the coming months.

If you’re in the mood for a real ‘Northumberland Menagerie’ then you’ll go a bundle for this series of exhibitions, which use animals to tell stories of community, climate change, migration and identity. At Woodhorn Musuem, the colliery’s historic cage shop has been transformed in a giant beehive (where audiences are invited to share important news with the hive…). A second installation at Woodhorn (opening May) commemorates the colliery’s pit ponies. Meanwhile ‘Of the Sea and Of the Sky’ at Berwick Museum and Art gallery explores themes of trade (and includes a giant paper cut Twelfth Night Pie – pictured). At Hexham Old Gaol ‘Over Familiars’ looks at stories of witchcraft, trials and incarceration in Northumberland, and the animals connected to them. At Morpeth Chantry Bagpipe Museum, the building’s location next to the river Wansbeck, and its former use as a school, is the inspiration for a giant school of papercut fish swimming through the building’s beams. Hit the trail.

A Northumberland Menagerie, until 30 October, Woodhorn Museum, Hexham Old Gaol, Berwick Museum & Art Gallery, Chantry Bagpipe Museum. museumsnorthumberland.org.uk