North East set for summer of experimental creativity

Posted: 3rd July 2012

Electronic musicians SBTRKT and Ghostpoet, visual artists Novak, Maximo Park’s Paul Smith, poet Lavinia Greenlaw and glacial soundscapers Lanterns on the Lake are just a few of the names confirmed for a major new interactive arts initiative taking place in the North East this summer.

Creative agencies Generator and Northern Film & Media have joined forced to deliver Space Invasion - a series of experimental music, arts and film collaborations in unusual venues across the North East.

Space Invasion is one of the UK’s largest projects for The Space – the experimental £2.5 million digital arts initiative developed by Arts Council England in partnership with the BBC.

The initiative has already produced the stunning Pallion featuring Lanterns on the Lake who are signed to legendary independent label Bella Union. The band and Novak Collective were commissioned and placed together by Generator and Northern Film & Media to tell the story of the historic vessel and once thriving shipbuilding yard. ‘Pallion’ will be available at in August.

Generator and Northern Film & Media have also teamed up with SBTRKT to offer a rare £8k commission to make a new music video for the pioneering electronic artist and producer’s ‘Trials of the Past’ track. Working closely with SBTRKT’s Young Turks label, Transmission will see one filmmaker become only the third person to make a music video for the London-based artist/producer, who released his debut album last year to critical acclaim and has remixed acts such as M.I.A, Modeselektor, Radiohead & Basement Jaxx.

Meanwhile, Poetic Licence will see Maximo Park lead singer Paul Smith perform an interpretation of poet Lavinia Greenlaw’s ‘Essex Kiss’ in Newcastle’s ancient Morden Tower and Raj Pannu - one half of critically-acclaimed dance duo Coldcut - has also been commissioned to produce The Old Grey Whistle Twist - a DVJ set using archive clips from the BBC’s seminal Old Grey Whistle Test TV show.

A public event at The Sage Gateshead on 22 September will be headlined by the wonderful Ghostpoet and feature performances by three emerging artists selected from Generator’s Tipping Point network. Attendees will also have the chance to view all the work produced by Space invasion.

Culture fans can also watch the project evolve, gain exclusive mobile/tablet interactive content and view other projects from across the country through The Space platform.

“Space Invasion will fuse the arts, film and digital media to bring the cutting-edge of creative activity in the North East to culture fans across the globe," said John Tulip, Northern Film & Media's managing director.

"The Space exemplifies the role that digital technology can play in driving creativity and we are thrilled to have partnered with Generator, Arts Council England and the BBC to deliver this ambitious and experimental initiative.”

Jim Mawdsley, Generator's chief executive said: “A strong partnership between Generator and Northern Film & Media formed the basis of plans for Space Invasion which provides an opportunity for high profile musicians to collaborate with digital specialists, poets and film-makers in unique venues across the North East,"

"The project truly pushes boundaries and will culminate in a special event at The Sage Gateshead on 22 September.”

"Art made for broadcast and digital distribution is increasingly becoming a means to producing accessible art for huge audiences. The Space is a new and exciting way of doing this, and Arts Council are proud to be funding the project with the BBC," added Alison Clark-Jenkins, Arts Council England's regional director for the North East.

"Space Invaders is a perfect example of the kind of experimental and engaging work that without digital support would only reach a fraction of its potential audience. It is also encouraging to see Generator and NFM, two agencies specialising in different fields, collaborating to deliver such an ambitious project.

Sponsors will also be able to take advantage of a range of unique live event, mobile and tablet marketing/branding opportunities - contact Dan Brain on (0191) 440 490 or email


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