Longing for a holiday by the sea? A new exhibition at Newcastle’s Laing Art Gallery’s examines unfaded seaside glamour, celebrating a time when this distinctive style of art, architecture and design transformed the British seaside.

During the 1920s and 30s, Art Deco became synonymous with leisure and pleasure as existing coastal destinations and transport networks were modernised while new resorts were established to meet the needs of the dawn of mass tourism.  

Consisting of more than 150 works drawn from public and private collections across the UK, including paintings, posters, brochures, drawings, photographs, fashion, furniture, ceramics and textiles, Art Deco by the Sea was originally created by The Sainsbury Centre at the University of East Anglia, Norwich. In Newcastle, the show has been redeveloped to include works from the Laing collection. 

The exhibition will also celebrate iconic examples of seaside architecture, from the Midland Hotel in Morecambe to Edinburgh’s famous Portobello Lido. Posters produced for several railway companies will show the relationship between these companies and the destinations they were promoting.

Main image: Summer 1929.32, Thomas Martine Ronaldson © Manchester Art Gallery, Bridgeman Images

Art Deco by the Sea is on at the Laing Art Gallery in Newcastle from October 17, 2020 until February 27, 2021.