Liverpool artwork of the day – Tuesday February 20 2007. ‘Liverpool Beach Burial’ 1968 by Keith Arnatt. In the ‘Centre of the Creative Universe: Liverpool and the Avant-Garde’ exhibition at Tate Liverpool Feb 20 to Sept 9 2007.
This is a colour photograph of an installation by Keith Arnatt. Its the late 60s and there’s an explosion of creativity in Liverpool. Musicians, poets and artists were doing some crazy things. Yoko Ono was being bandaged by Adrian Henri in the Bluecoat, someone was sawing religious books in half at the Blackie, the Boyles were performing their ‘Son et Lumiere for Bodily Fluids and Functions’ and Keith Arnatt buried several people in sand up to their necks on a Liverpool beach – literally embedding creativity into the city’s fabric.
All this and loads more is wonderfully documented in the latest show at Tate Liverpool which opens today.
To coincide with Liverpool’s 800th anniversary celebrations, this ambitious exhibition offers a unique account of the city’s art scene during the past fifty years. It explores how the city has inspired a diverse range of nationally and internationally renowned artists to create an external view of Liverpool. Revealing, as well as challenging, the myths of its creative scene, Liverpool is presented as a world city with an undying capacity to inspire imaginations.
Alongside artworks that chart Liverpool’s rise as a centre of the 1960s global pop revolution, it reveals how Liverpool has also inspired documentary photography, politically motivated art, and played host to avant-garde movements from Pop to Conceptual Art. It features many artworks previously unseen in the UK by major figures such as Keith Arnatt, Bernd and Hilla Becher, Boyle Family, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Edward Chambre-Hardman, Jeremy Deller and Paul Ryan, Rineke Dijkstra, Filmaktion, Adrian Henri, Candida Hofer, Astrid Kircherr and Max Scheler, Martin Parr, and Bob and Roberta Smith, Alec Soth, Stephen Willats and Tom Wood.