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On the spot

Chris Gibb is art co-ordinator at Harlow Green Infants School, Gateshead

This was our first visit to Baltic. An artist had been working with our Year 2 in school on 3D models made from recycled materials in a project started when we hoped Newcastle-Gateshead would win City of Culture status.

We asked the children to consider their school in the environment and to look across the North-east at public art, heroes and heroines and bridges. Coming to Baltic and seeing things for themselves meant more to the children. We walked across the Millennium Bridge and looked at the wrought iron on the front of the Malmaison hotel. Some said "it's like Jack and the Beanstalk". The children had never looked at buildings closely before.

When he saw the imposing, red sandstone building of a law firm, one little boy said: "It's canny posh that." They are looking at things in a different way. It's helped develop sensitivity and appreciation in the children. If they go home and say to their parents "we would like to go to Baltic again" that would be great.

On the map

Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art

South Shore Road, Gateshead NE8 3BA

Tel: 0191 478 1810 www.balticmill.com

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