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  • Lemn Sissay MBE opens Every Day is a New Day
    Photo credit: Manu Palomeque
  • Turner Contemporary's Summer 2017 Business Circle
    Photo credit: Manu Palomeque
  • Phyllida Barlow's sculptures tower above gallery visitors
    Photo credit: Manu Palomeque
  • Turner Contemporary's making area, at the heart of the gallery
    Photo credit: Manu Palomeque
  • Lemn Sissay MBE and Turner Contemporary's Young Art Leaders
    Photo credit: Jason Pay

The gallery welcomed over 9000 visits during the first weekend of its new exhibition Every Day is a New Day.

These figures follow a successful preview event on 24th May, which saw poet Lemn Sissay MBE open the summer exhibition to a captivated gallery filled with local people, families, school children and art-lovers of all ages. Addressing the audience with a rousing speech, Sissay reflected; “Art helps us to breathe, to grow wings and fly.”

Ahead of the opening, Lemn Sissay MBE spent the afternoon with Turner Contemporary’s Young Art Leaders (aged 5 – 11) who have been working with the gallery to take the lead and transform four neglected sites in Margate with art and creativity.  Sissay and the Young Art Leaders met to swap ideas, stories and jokes before enjoying a tour of the galleries. The sites will be unveiled this 8th July.

Every Day is a New Day celebrates the capacity of arts to pioneer change, challenge perceptions and embolden society. It includes work by Phyllida Barlow, who has just represented Britain at the Venice Biennale, Michael Armitage and JMW Turner shown alongside teachers and pupils from Kent and Kenya. With a ‘making area’ at the centre of the gallery, everyone is invited to explore their own creativity.

Putting the artwork of children and young people on display has proven popular with visitors. One visitor detailed; “...the creations of children and young adults that won art competitions are absolutely amazing. They use all sorts of different materials not only to celebrate beauty but also to highlight the topics that interest or worry them: the environment, fashion, war, suffering, etc... Some bring tears to the eyes”

The season also sees the second year of Turner Contemporary’s Summer Business Circle who came together for the first time at the gallery’s opening events. The 2017 Business Circle is made up of five Kent businesses, Miles & Barr, Boys & Maughan Solicitors, McCabe Ford Williams, del Renzio & del Renzio and the Canterbury Auction Galleries, who are supporting Every Day is a New Day.

Victoria Pomery OBE, Director of Turner Contemporary said:

“We are delighted to have welcomed so many visitors to our opening weekend and to see the galleries buzzing with activity. Our new exhibition season brings together a rich array of work - reflecting the importance (and vibrancy!) of creativity across generations and continents. We look forward to a busy summer ahead.”

Since opening in 2011, Turner Contemporary has had over 2,390,000 visits, and the gallery hopes to welcome its 2.4 millionth visitor in the coming weeks. By popular demand, the gallery will be open every day in August.

Posted by: Turner Contemporary on Fri 2 Jun 2017