Meeting Point: Pannett Art Gallery
Seat was an installation for the main gallery at Pannett Art Gallery reflecting the dual purpose of the space and its role in the history and governance of Whitby.
The installation, by artist Pippa Hale, used seats loaned by members of the public to tell the story of the town and its inhabitants.
Title Seat Historical Sites Pannett Art Gallery, Whitby Lead Artists Pippa Hale Artwork Installation and Photography Partners / Stakeholders Pannett Art Gallery, Arts&Heritage and Arts Council England’s Museum Resilience Fund Budget £8000.00 Development 6 months Dates 20 July – 29 August 2016
Seat is part of the Meeting Point project led by Arts&Heritage, which saw nine new contemporary art installations at four museums in the North East and five museums in Yorkshire during 2016. Meeting Point is funded by Arts Council England’s Museum Resilience Fund.
Seat, was a new commission made by artist Pippa Hale in response Pannett Art Gallery. The installation recreated a Whitby Town Council Meeting, complete with public gallery, using local residents’ seats. Visitors to the exhibition were able to match the chairs to their owners and learn more about the stories that make the chairs so special and unique.
Pippa explained: “I wanted to reflect the dual use of the building; both as a gallery space and seat of local Government hosting the Whitby Town Council meetings. Seats have a practical use within the gallery but I want them to act as the artwork itself. That’s why we’re encouraging local people in Whitby to lend their chairs and share the stories behind them. The stories, along with the chairs and their owners, will feature in the new exhibition.”
The gifting of seats is significant because it marks a special moment in Whitby’s history when, in 1928, local people, upon hearing of the death of Pannett Art Gallery founder Robert Elliot Pannett, donated chairs to ensure the Gallery – named in his honour – could be completed”
The aim of the project was to reveal Pannett Art Gallery’s unique role in the town’s history to Whitby townsfolk, tourists and the art world.
Arts&Heritage supported the nine participating museums throughout the process, sharing knowledge of presenting contemporary art projects and commissions in non-traditional art spaces.
A networking event between the participating museums and 40 artists from across the UK took place at BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art and visits to artists’ studios were arranged. Museum teams also met with peers at other properties to learn how they successfully delivered contemporary art projects at their museums and heritage sites.
All museums developed their own Artist’s Brief. Following the networking event artists were invited to send in an expression of interest to museums that interested therm.
Three artists were shortlisted by each museum to draw up a more detailed proposal and were paid £500 each
Information to follow
£8,000 to include all materials, travel and installation costs
£500 paid to each of 3 artists shortlisted
- The commission was used to raise the profile of Pannett Art Gallery to the local audience and to attract new audiences
- To attract contemporary visual artists to reinterpret the Pannett Art Gallery site and collection
- To develop and build a regional and national audience for the Meeting Point project commissions
A marketing campaign for the Meeting Point project was led and delivered by Emma Pybus and David Brookbanks.
The Meeting Point project was documented by Jonathan Turner and Peter Spence
The gifting of seats is significant because it marks a special moment in Whitby’s history when, in 1928, local people, upon hearing of the death of Pannett Art Gallery founder Robert Elliot Pannett, donated chairs to ensure the Gallery – named in his honour – could be completed.
Whitby residents were invited to play a starring role in the installation. Using local residents’ seats, Pannett Art Gallery recreated a Whitby Town Council Meeting, complete with public gallery.
Residents of Whitby applied to take part in the exhibition by emailing a picture of their chair and a brief description of its story. Successful applicants were invited to Green Lane Centre to meet the artist, drop off their chairs and have their photos taken for the exhibition. A photography catalogue detailing all the submissions remain on display at Pannett Gallery.
Pippa Hale is an artist based in Leeds. She is particularly interested in social history and geography and her work includes large-scale installations both in heritage venues and the public realm. For Pannett Art Gallery, Pippa is working with local residents to create ‘Seat’, an installation that reflects the dual purpose of the beautiful temporary exhibitions space and its role in the history and governance of Whitby.
Born in 1971, Coventry, Pippa studied at the University of Leeds. Previous projects include ‘Beyond The Dustheaps’ at the Dickens Museum (London); ‘Pool’ a temporary installation at Leeds International Pool commissioned by Leeds City Council; ‘North and South’ for Southampton Art Gallery and ‘Yarn’ commissioned by The Culture Company for Leeds City Council and Holbeck Urban Village.