Page D1.1 . 02 April 2003                     
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    Art Center upon Tyne

    by Don Barker

    The abandoned Baltic Flour Mills in the northern England town of Gateshead has recently been transformed into the Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art. It joins other illustrious works in the heart of the Gateshead Quays regeneration area.

    Among the Baltic's notable neighbors is the Foster and Partners-designed £70 million Gateshead music center, "The Sage," which is currently under construction. Nearby is the award-winning Gateshead Millennium Bridge by Wilkinson Eyre Architects, which links to Newcastle-Upon-Tyne's quayside master-planned by Terry Farrell.

    The Baltic Centre opened in July 2002, heralding a new breed of art space. Not only does it present a constantly changing program of exhibitions and events, it invites artists from all over the world to work in the dynamic education and public program involving the local population. Both physically and symbolically, the £46 million renovated mill building forms the center of Gateshead's vision for the rejuvenation of the riverside.

    The building was originally designed in the 1950s by civil engineers Mouchel and Partners working with Hull-based architect, Gelder & Kitchen. The Baltic Flour Mills was a dual-purpose factory for the production of flour and animal feed before it closed 1982.   >>>

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    ArchWeek Image

    The west elevation of the Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art in Gateshead, designed by Ellis Williams Architects.
    Photo: Don Barker

    ArchWeek Image

    The Wilkinson Eyre-designed Gateshead Millennium Bridge is just outside the entrance to the Baltic.
    Photo: Don Barker

     

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