NOVAK collaborate with the Laing Art Gallery for the Lindisfarne Gospels exhibition

14 June 2022

​Design studio NOVAK collaborate with the Laing Art Gallery on an immersive light projection for the Lindisfarne Gospels exhibition

The Laing Art Gallery is excited to announce it is working with video design specialists NOVAK to produce an immersive digital experience for the forthcoming Lindisfarne Gospels exhibition. 

The creative studio is renowned for producing site-specific innovative and ambitious art and design projects on a grand and spectacular scale that transforms and reimagines locations into extraordinary displays of colour and motion. 

The immersive digital experience will be the first gallery that the visitor will encounter and will establish the wider context for the Lindisfarne Gospels, the most spectacular manuscript to survive from Anglo-Saxon England. 

The book represents the golden age of design and craftsmanship in Northumbria and has survived in almost perfect condition for over one thousand years. 

Mock image of digital installation for The Lindisfarne Gospels exhibition, courtesy of NOVAK

NOVAK will be creating an animated audio video installation that will immerse audiences within the stunning design of the manuscript and the environments that shaped the book’s creation.  

Based around a tidal theme, the installation will transport audiences to the early medieval period in Britain through light, visuals, and sounds. Visual elements will be strongly rooted in the physical landscape of Lindisfarne and reflect the twice daily changing of the tides, which will be used as a recurring visual motif, enveloping the surrounding walls of the gallery, as it does the causeway at Holy Island.  

With each return of the tide, a new immersive environment will be revealed, providing audiences with an experiential journey that transports them from the birthplace of the Gospels to the farthest shores of the Mediterranean. 

Adam Finlay, Studio Director at Novak, says: “NOVAK are thrilled to be working with the Laing to create an immersive installation as part of the exhibition of the Lindisfarne Gospels. The manuscript is such an amazing example of devotion, design and craftsmanship, which embodies the very rich and expansive history of the North East of England, but with connections far beyond the region. It is a great privilege to explore and interpret this fascinating story in a new and exciting way.” 

Julie Milne, Chief Curator of Art Galleries, Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums, says: “This is a new kind of exhibition making for the Laing Art Gallery and we are excited to be working with Novak in creating a digital immersive piece of interpretation for the amazing Lindisfarne Gospels. Visitors will be able to explore the craftsmanship and artistry of the manuscripts on a monumental scale before seeing the Gospels themselves in the adjoining Gallery.”

Elliot Thomson, Keith Daniels and Adam Finlay from NOVAK. Photo by Colin Davison

The Lindisfarne Gospels will feature in a contemporary exhibition at the Laing Art Gallery from 17 September to 3 December 2022, on loan from the British Library.    

The Lindisfarne Gospels exhibition is sponsored by Ad Gefrin Visitor Experience and Distillery, which will open in Wooler in autumn 2022 and bring to life the hidden history of the 7th Century Anglo Saxon royal summer palace of the Northumbrian Kings and Queens discovered at Yeavering only four miles away – one of the 20th century’s most remarkable archaeological finds. 

The Laing Art Gallery is also grateful for support from The North of Tyne Combined Authority (NTCA), The National Lottery Heritage Fund, The Barbour Foundation, Garfield Weston Foundation, The Headley Trust, The Kirby Laing Foundation, and sponsors, Fergusons Ltd and Tyne and Wear Metro. 

NOVAK is a creative studio producing innovative and ambitious art and design projects.  Specialising in video design and immersive experiences, this encompasses projection mapping, art and museum installations, stage visuals for music artists and video accompaniments for theatre, dance and events. NOVAK’s work and skill sets seamlessly blend between their own innovative art installations and video designs created in collaboration with theatre directors, choreographers, museum curators and other creative associates. 

Their art installations are often site-specific and on a grand and spectacular scale, that transforms and reimagines locations into extraordinary displays of colour and motion. These works explore a wide variety of themes, often including geographically relevant historic and cultural narratives that resonate deeply with audiences. NOVAK’s work within the realms of theatre and dance provides spectacular backdrops and immersive environments for performances to be enveloped within. Their arresting designs elevate narratives, augment performances and greatly enhance audience experiences. 

NOVAK has presented work throughout the world and at some of the most highly regarded arts festivals, including the UK’s largest light festival, Lumiere (London, Durham and Derry-Londonderry), Brighton Festival and the internationally renowned Singapore Night Festival. Their work has been commissioned by the likes of Bloomberg, Google, MTV and has featured alongside many celebrated musicians.