Literature through Art

Booking Enquiry

KS4-5: English Language and Literature

The Bard


Until Friday 31 December

Booking Information

Cost: £100 for half day, £150 for full day

Workshop length: 

Half day = 1-hour introductory tour + one workshop (90 mins)

Full day = 1-hour introductory tour + morning workshop (90 mins) + afternoon workshop (90 mins)

Schools Membership Scheme:

Save on workshop costs and enjoy a range of additional benefits by joining our yearly membership scheme

Workshop Summary

Learning through the Art Gallery is a two-year project funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC). It is led by Dr. Claudine van Hensbergen at Northumbria University, and by Anne Fountain at the Laing Art Gallery, Newcastle upon Tyne, and the Shipley Art Gallery, Gateshead. The funded project will run between February 2019 and December 2021, though sessions will still bookable beyond this point, at full charge. For more information on the project please visit the project website here.

These study sessions are designed to help English pupils explore the collection and use art to enrich their understanding of language, literature and creative writing.

The workshops build on a successful pilot project run between Northumbria University and the Laing, completed in 2017 and funded by Arts Council England. We are continually developing the content of our workshops in light of exchanges with our steering group of eight local Teacher Ambassadors.

Workshops are delivered collaboratively by Northumbria academic staff, postgraduate students and the Laing’s Learning Team. KS4-5 pupils will benefit from working with English scholars and professional writers as they develop their skills in an inspirational gallery setting.

Workshop topics are flexible and can be tailored to a given group’s needs, and may draw on permanent displays and/or temporary exhibitions. Previous workshops have included: sessions developing close-analysis skills through comparative study of art and texts; creative written responses to art in the collections; sessions using art to develop contextual knowledge around a KS4/5 set text.

The Laing’s collections contain more than 1,000 works by artists including Edward Burne-Jones, Anthony Caro, Paul Gaugin, William Holman Hunt, John Martin, Henry Moore, Joshua Reynolds and Stanley Spencer. The Laing also has rich collections of the works of local NE artists.

Northumbria University has more than 40 permanent academic staff working across English Language, Literature and Creative Writing. At Northumbria this project is led by Dr. Claudine van Hensbergen.

The initial round of the project was delivered in January 2020. As part of the sessions that were delivered Northumbria University staff created handout documents to support the students. These documents are available to download from the links below to enable you to explore and enhance classroom work on these areas of study:


- Tragedy. Dr Monika Smialkowska 

- Tragedy. Dr Adam Hansen


- Browning. Dr Claudine van Hensbergen

- Keats. Dr David Stewart

- Rossetti. Dr Claudine van Hensbergen

- Power & Conflict. James Ward Pgr

Creative Writing:

- Creative Writing. Prof Michael Green

- Creative Writing. Susannah Ronnie PhD

Victorian Era

- A Christmas Carol. Dr Pete Newbon

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