Great Exhibition of the North opening event (Photo credit%3AEYELEVEL)

The 80-day exhibition, which takes place between 22nd June and 9th September across NewcastleGateshead will celebrate art, culture, design and innovation from across the North.

The free exhibition is expected to be the biggest event in England this year and will tell the inspiring story of the North of England and how its innovators, businesses, artists and designers have shaped the present and are inspiring the future. 

Visitors will get the chance to see ‘the best in Northern creativity’ from pop art pioneer Richard Hamilton to world-renowned sculptor Antony Gormley; live performances from artists such as Roisin Murphy and Kaiser Chiefs; the original character models of Postman Pat; and the story of Graphene told through next generation lighting to the world’s most high-tech dress. 

What to expect at the Great Exhibition of the North

Visitors will begin their journey at one of three venues: Great North Museum, BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art or Sage Gateshead. They’ll then join three interconnected trails through 30 venues and public spaces on either side of the River Tyne.

The three trails will comprise The Innovation Trail, The Arts Trail, and The Design Trail, each of which will take visitors to different venues supporting their themes.

The Great North Museum will open its doors with ‘Which Way North’, a visual experience which introduces the wider exhibition and a display of iconic Northern objects. 

BALTIC will display artist Ryan Gander’s pared down sculptures depicting objects that symbolise innovation born in the North of England; commissions from artists such as Jane and Louise Wilson, Michael Dean and Tim Etchells; and a maquette of Antony Gormley’s Angel of the North. 

Sage Gateshead will curate a summer of music, filled with concerts, festivals and family activity featuring cutting-edge artists such as Nightmares on Wax and classical concerts from Royal Northern Sinfonia. 

Other venues involved in the trails include The Biscuit Factory, Gateshead Millennium Bridge, the Discovery Museum and the Mining Institute, to name a few.

For more information, visit

Image: Great Exhibition of the North opening event (Photo credit:EYELEVEL)