TOUCHED, the title of the International exhibition for the 6th Liverpool Biennial International Festival of Contemporary Art, 18 September – 28 November 2010, was announced today by Lewis Biggs, Artistic Director.

The announcement coincided with confirmation that Liverpool Biennial has secured £1.2 million of funding to support the 2010 event. The funding package consists of £600,000 from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and £425,000 from the Northwest Regional Development Agency (NWDA) through Liverpool Vision. The NWDA also confirmed an additional £175,000 to support an integrated marketing campaign for the 2010 event.

Liverpool Biennial is the largest and one of the most exciting contemporary visual arts events in the UK, and with 975,000 visits in 2008, one of the best attended in the world. The 2008 event generated an economic impact of over £26 million for the region.

The 2010 international show will celebrate a decade of commissioning new art – more than 200 artworks – through curatorial collaboration. As a result of Liverpool Biennial’s success, commissioning and collaboration have become increasingly common strategies globally for Biennials and Triennials during this period.

Touched will consist of new art that succeeds in affecting the viewer: art that moves us in mind, body and soul. The new commissions for Touched will be announced early spring 2010.

Lewis Biggs comments: “The discussions within the curatorial team set out with the recognition that if art is to be memorable, interesting or influential it has to start by moving us.”

“Touched presents affective art, and so becomes a sketch map of the affections – passion, rage, lust, pleasure, fear and joy. Throughout history, artists have refreshed their practice through returning to these permanent motivators in the human psyche. The collapse and restructuring of financial markets in the countries formerly known as G8 has given urgency to our need for an art whose outlook is characterised by inter-dependence and mutual responsibility. Artists depend on their art touching its audience to communicate shared meaning. The erotic frisson between art and its audience is the same as that between individuals who share interests.”

The curatorial team for Touched is Lorenzo Fusi, Liverpool Biennial (non-gallery sites), Peter Gorschlüter (Tate Liverpool), Patrick Henry (Open Eye Gallery), Sara-Jayne Parsons (the Bluecoat), Mike Stubbs (FACT – Foundation for Art and Creative Technology) and Mark Waugh (Afoundation / Greenland Street).

Liverpool Biennial is supported by the Northwest Regional Development Agency (NWDA) and the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF)