Work of Hartlepool artist Henry Mason set to be celebrated

The posters on display at Jarrow Hall.
The posters on display at Jarrow Hall.

The work of a prestigious artist is to be celebrated at an exhibition.

The display is set to step back in time to the heyday of the railways by highlighting the work of Hartlepool-born poster artist Frank Henry Mason.

Edward Yardley is to deliver a talk about Mason.

Edward Yardley is to deliver a talk about Mason.

Mason produced over 200 railway posters and 17 carriage print designs between 1910 and 1961, showcasing some of the best locations – most of them coastal – in the North East and beyond.

The exhibition of his work will run at Jarrow Hall, South Tyneside, until Saturday, June 3, featuring 17 pieces charting the artist’s changing styles during his working life.

Edward Yardley, who has written a book on Mason, is to host an event at Jarrow Hall, on Church Bank, on Thursday at 2pm as he leads a discussion on the Hartlepool-born artist.

Mr Yardley said: “Mason was recruited by LNER on the back of his reputation as a marine artist but he wasn’t a one-trick pony and could turn his hand to almost anything.

Examples of Mason's work which will be on display.

Examples of Mason's work which will be on display.

“The LNER had a much bolder and experimental attitude to posters than its rivals, and this showed in their use of people like Mason, who had been fine artists in their own right. The results were amazing.

“In 1927, Mason was one of five artists given exclusive contracts with LNER to create 20 or so posters every year.”

Leigh Venus, operations manager for culture and heritage at Groundwork STAN (South Tyneside and Newcastle), the environment and community-focused charity which runs Jarrow Hall, said: “We were approached by Steven Elliot about the possibility of exhibiting specially selected pieces from the Mitchell Collection, a private collection of Mason’s celebrated work.

“As a visitor attraction that always likes to keep people entertained by showcasing the best the region has to offer, we thought it a wonderful idea to exhibit these pieces in a new gallery space here at Jarrow Hall, and with support from our main sponsor Port of Tyne we’ve been able to do this and give visitors the opportunity to see these wonderful and evocative works for free.”

Examples of Mason's work which will be on display.

Examples of Mason's work which will be on display.

Examples of Mason's work which will be on display.

Examples of Mason's work which will be on display.