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Public art


The term 'public art' means art commissioned for public spaces, either outdoors or in public buildings. Public art pieces can be in a variety of media and can include temporary as well as permanently sited work.

There are a range of public art works across County Durham. The attached document provides an overview of some of the key works and where they can be found.

If you are considering commissioning an artist to produce a new piece of public art, there is a wealth of resources available online to guide you through the commissioning process.

  • Public Art Online provides guidelines on the commissioning process from the perspective of the commissioner and a range of case studies.
  • Ixia is the public art think tank, providing guidance on the role of art in the public realm.
  • Axis has a searchable database of contemporary artists and curators.

If you are developing a larger-scale public art project which potentially has major impact for communities, we may be able to offer a limited amount of support to the project. Please get in touch with us for further details.

Planning permission

Many fixed art projects may need planning consent and you should enquire directly with your relevant planning office.

Contact us
Arts Development
03000 265 552
Our address is:
  • Durham County Council
  • Northumbria House
  • Aykley Heads
  • Durham
  • County Durham
  • United Kingdom
  • DH1 5TS

Planning (strategic)
03000 262 830
Our address is:
  • Room 123-128
  • County Hall
  • Durham
  • County Durham
  • United Kingdom
  • DH1 5UL

Planning - Central/East
03000 262 830
Our address is:
  • Room 4/86-102
  • County Hall
  • Durham
  • County Durham
  • United Kingdom
  • DH1 5UL

Planning - South/West/North
03000 262 830
Our address is:
  • G73-82
  • County Hall
  • County Durham
  • United Kingdom
  • DH1 5UL
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