Since 2012, Towner Gallery's Marina Castledine has been involved in fostering creative pathways for young people in Eastbourne. She also led the Arts Award’s Discover and Explore programme for Trinity College London and knows a thing or two about the industry.
Sharing her insider knowledge, Marina imparts a few words of advice on how to navigate art galleries, review exhibitions and use your Arts Award to its full potential. Check them out below!
Marina's Top Tips
Going to a gallery can be a daunting experience. Whether you’re familiar with the exhibition environment or it’s all new, here are a few top tips for how to get the most from your visit.
1. Find out what’s on before you go. Visit the gallery website and check out their social media.
2. Look for special discounts for young people. If they don’t offer free or reduced-price tickets, it’s worth phoning or emailing ahead and seeing what you can negotiate. Make sure you mention you’re studying for an Arts Award and you never know what doors may open!
3. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Staff are there to help and have lots of knowledge about how the organisation works, what is happening that day and may have supported people through their Arts Award before.
4. Keep an open mind. There are no right or wrong responses when it comes to viewing artwork in a gallery. What you see and gain from the experience will be richer for spending some time looking and reflecting on the artist’s intention. This may be supported by text panels or labels alongside the work.
5. Enjoy! A gallery is your space, a public space. If what you see one day doesn’t work for you, it’s worth visiting again as exhibitions can radically change throughout the year.
6. Give feedback. If you think the gallery could improve its experience for young people, drop them a line and politely let them know. If you had a great time promote the gallery via social media, word of mouth and of course, through your Arts Award too!