Throw Back Thursday – Gateshead Family Sculpture Day

This year’s Gateshead Family Sculpture Day celebrated it’s 30th year! As someone who has just turned 30, it is hard to comprehend an event that is the same age as me. Like most 30th birthdays, it went off with a bang! And before you ask, yes there was lots of cake!

On 27th September 2015, well over a thousand people descended on The Grove in Saltwell Park for a beautiful day of making and creating with tonnes of wood and hammers and nails! It was a very sunny day – the perfect weather for some sculpture building.


This year’s theme was home and we encouraged participants to show us what home meant to them and create a sculpture representing it. We saw attendees make all sorts – from tree houses, to ships, to the infamous Tyne Bridge, to beds, to dens, to castles!


As always, we had sculptors and artists on hand, to help get those creative juices following, live music from local bands, Raku tiles and our Culture team crew were on hand chatting to makers and photographing the day.

The day was made even more special as it signified the launch and the beginning of Sculpture 30 Festival; our celebration of sculpture in and across Gateshead.


I spoke to a little boy who had spent all summer planning his master creation and he’d even drawn out blue prints of his “garden sculpture”. Just shows, how important and valuable free events like this are for children (and adults) to explore their creative sides and to work with materials, they wouldn’t normally.


That was my take away moment from this year’s sculpture day; seeing a field full of diverse people making, united under the common goal to create a sculpture! Something tangible and something fantastic!


Sculpture Day for us takes about 4months worth of planning, lots of blood, sweat and tears – but this year, what I loved most, was after all of that work and the day was done, retreating to my home (just along the top of Saltwell Park) and looking at Twitter, Facebook and Instagram and seeing pictures of happy families, couples and groups of people making and proudly standing by their sculptures.


(All photos credited to Dee Chaneva – Hillfield Photography Studio)


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