The artist behind the world-famous image of the Tyneside ‘Gadgie’ is working on a commission to mark the opening of a new dining quarter in central Newcastle’s premier shopping centre – and, in the process, raising funds for two local organisations close to his heart.
Alexander Millar, whose nostalgic, humorous depictions of the flat-capped, dark-suited working man of Tyneside have catapulted him to fame and fortune, has produced two new creations to coincide with the opening of the £25M restaurant development at intu Eldon Square.
The first of the new works, ‘Lollipops and 99s’ reflects on the theme of family togetherness in the North-East, and has taken up permanent residence on the dividing screen at one of the entrances to the new intu Eldon Square dining area, with the original oil painting of the image being auctioned to the general public with the proceeds being divided between The Globe Gallery and The Bubble Foundation.
The artwork to be auctioned is an original oil painting (400cm x 200cm) and is available to view at The Globe Gallery. On Thursday 27 October a selling exhibition – entitled ‘A Slice of Life’ - of brand new work from Alexander Millar will run at the gallery until mid December. A Slice of Life is sponsored by intu Eldon Square.
Alexander said: “I was thrilled to be approached by intu Eldon Square with the idea of creating an image for the divider between the centre and the new restaurant quarter – and the fact that I was able to involve both The Bubble Foundation and The Globe Gallery makes this project even more special.
“My dear friend Denise Robertson invited me to be a patron of The Bubble Foundation, and it’s an essential charity that requires all the support it can get. The Globe Gallery is a highly respected organisation that is currently involved in the innovative Blossom Tree initiative, supporting those going through anxiety, bereavement and mental health issues.
“Before my career took off I was a victim of depression and so I feel very strongly about supporting this campaign.
“I’m also delighted to be unveiling a new exhibition of work at The Globe Gallery in October - the first exhibition of new work in the North-East since my inaugural show at The Great North Museum in 2010 (Working Man).”
Phil Steele, general manager of intu Eldon Square, added: “It’s a joy to work with Alex on this commission and exhibition, that we are proud to support. I’m a huge fan of Alexander’s work. He has a unique style that really captures the essence of the working man and his family, enjoying a life full of love and with a fundamental appreciation for the important things in life – family, dogs and football! His popularity knows no bounds and we are hopeful that the auction goes really well as a fundraiser for both The Bubble Foundation and The Globe Gallery. We’re also delighted to be sponsoring Alex’s new exhibition, A Slice of Life at the Globe Gallery.
"Our new restaurant dining area will be open until late, so evening visitors will be able to enjoy the new commission on the dividing screen, which will be revealed every evening once the wider shopping centre has closed."
"I was thrilled to be approached by intu Eldon Square with the idea of creating an image for the divider between the centre and the new restaurant quarter."
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