PUPILS from a South Tyneside primary school have received national acclaim for their artistic talents.

The National Gallery in London, which houses one of the greatest collections of paintings from internationally renowned artists, has chosen the artwork of pupils at SS Peter and Paul RC Primary School in South Shields as part of a primary school exhibition called ‘Take One Picture 2020.’

Across the UK 1,000 schools took part in the project, with only 37 first schools selected to showcase their art at the gallery.

Notably, SS Peter and Paul, soon to join Bishop Chadwick Catholic Education Trust, was the only school from the North of England to secure a place in the exhibition.

Maria Butt, headteacher at SS Peter and Paul RC Primary School, said: “I am incredibly proud of our children and their wonderfully artistic creations.

“The exhibition initially caught my eye because of its theme ‘Men of the Docks’.

"As we’re situated in Tyne Dock, I thought it was important to get involved and share the talents that we have here within our school community.

“Creative art is a key part of our wider curriculum from Early Years to Key Stage Two. As a school, we focus on nurturing creativity from the start of primary school, through to the end.

“It’s fantastic to be recognised on a national level, especially given the huge number of schools who entered. Not only are we representing our school but the entire region - it’s great to put South Shields and the wider North-East area on the map.”

The exhibition is in place now and, when the museum reopens, members of the public will be able to view the pupils’ work adorning the famous walls of the gallery.

Jenny Parker, Art Co-ordinator and Project Lead said: “Every child from Nursery to Year 6 examined the painting “Men of the Docks” by George Bellows – alongside our environment of Tyne Dock and the river – with a view to developing ideas and themes they could express through various artworks.

“We were amazed at the results which demonstrated the remarkable creativity and vibrancy with which the children embraced the whole project.

“We were so proud of what we had achieved that we arranged to exhibit the whole school project in South Shields Museum and Art Gallery so that the children’s work could be viewed by the people of the town.

“The work ranged from textiles, collage, sculpture, wall hangings, painting, cityscape, performance poetry and video.

“We were excited to be given permission by Jimmy Nail, to use his song ‘Big River’, in our video installation and the school choir proudly sang the song at the opening of the exhibition.

“It was the icing on the cake to be selected for the exhibition in the National Gallery and we couldn’t be prouder of what we have learnt and achieved, as a whole school, by taking part in this fantastic project.”

To view the artwork by SS Peter and Paul RC Primary School visit nationalgallery.org.uk/exhibitions/take-one-picture-2020/explore-the-exhibition