South Shields exhibition puts The Word in pictures

Jos Hislop, left, with Joanne Gledhill, centre, and Kim Knight
Jos Hislop, left, with Joanne Gledhill, centre, and Kim Knight

A unique interpretation of South Tyneside’s newest cultural venue will be on show at an exhibition later this month.

In This Space will bring together still photography and sound to explore the role of The Word, National Centre for the Written Word, which opened in South Shields Market Place late last year.

The project has been led by artist and photographer Jo Hislop, in collaboration with library staff members Joanne Gledhill and Kim Knights.

Jo had produced a portrait project and a ‘Story of a Library’ exhibition at the former Central Library, and was commissioned to continue working at The Word through funding from Arts Council England (ACE).

She said: “The Word project has been about the role libraries play in local communities, the people that use them and the services they offer. As libraries close across the country, South Tyneside decided to re-imagine a library and opened this wonderful new building.

“Working with Joanne and Kim, we’ve explored the changing role of public libraries and their significance to the communities they serve. “We’ve spoken to regulars and first-time users, taking pictures of them and the building and what goes on inside The Word.

“People use it for so many different reasons – reading and researching, job-hunting, and parents and childminders use it to entertain their children. It’s a hugely valuable resource.

The exhibition will be on display in the Storyworld Room at The Word from Tuesday until March 14Caption