Image © Jack Pell

New exhibition at Humber Street Gallery Highlights Hull’s Bizarre and Magical History

  • New colourful Spring exhibition at Humber Street Gallery explores Hull’s rich social history, folklore and industrial heritage; 
  • The exhibition is by Hull-born artist Jack Pell, and features reimagined replicas of Hull’s bridges alongside puppets; 
  • Exhibition Dates: 3 May – 7 July 2024. Launch Event: 2 May, 6-9pm. 

This Spring, Hull-born artist Jack Pell unveils his first institutional solo exhibition, Byland’s Super Saga, at Humber Street Gallery. Through this showcase, Pell invites visitors to delve into the magic of everyday life, offering a creative interpretation of Hull unseen before. 

 Hull is often described as a city shaped by water. From the drains to the estuary and the sea. Byland’s Super Saga uses these as watery metaphors to celebrate and explore the area’s rich social history, folklore, and industrial heritage; while introducing more modern and unlikely twists such as fairground art, car customisation, scarecrows, and model building. 

The works that will be featured in the exhibition weave together the recognisable with the bizarre and magical. From reimagined replicas of some of Hull’s bridges, to puppets named Wyke and Grim, who take on the personas of Hull and Grimsby respectively.

 The exhibition is rooted in Pell’s personal experience growing up in Hull as a working-class person, and all the vibrant complexities that come with that. Class, depicted as diverse and colourful, serves as a central theme, and offers viewers a deeply personal yet relatable perspective on Hull’s social landscape. 

 Absolutely Cultured’s Creative Director, Marianne Lewsley-Stier said: “We’re thrilled to have Byland’s Super Saga with us this May. The exhibition feels like a perfect follow-on from our similarly Hull-centred showcase You and Me in HU3, by Russell Boyce and George Norris, and allows visitors to dive a bit deeper into the bizarre and magical side of the city’s history.” 

Jack Pell said: “In the show’s title: ‘Byland’, a word originating in Old Norse, describes an area surrounded by water, which I feel is a fitting word to describe Humberside. While the word ‘Super’ comes from the language of video games, which I see as a part of vernacular culture that is integral to the exhibition. Lastly, ‘Saga’ references Old Norse sagas – heroic tales of gods and monsters.” 

 Byland’s Super Saga will run from 3 May to 7 July 2024, with an opening launch party on 2 May which is open to the public.