The Bluecoat reopens to the public on Wednesday 19 May

The Bluecoat is reopening to the public on Wednesday 19th May 2021 with an exciting summer programme for families and art lovers alike. 

Visitors will find a new look Bluecoat in more ways than one. When the arts centre reopens there will be a new-look Hub space and cafe, which will transform the visitor welcome. There is a refreshed visual identity, and a new website is coming soon providing an improved online experience. As part of the capital development project, the Bluecoat has commissioned a series of artworks for the space from artists Babak GanjeiSumuyya Khader and Harold Offeh, including an area specifically developed for families.

In the courtyard visitors are presented with Bluecoat Platform, an ambitious new outdoor sculpture by artists Simon and Tom Bloor, created with children from Out the Blue, Bluecoat’s after school art club. There will be a programme of family events in the summer, based around the sculpture. The programme is currently being selected by children and their families based on submissions from artists and performers. 

Bluecoat’s galleries are presenting an exhibition as part of the 11th edition of the Liverpool Biennial The Stomach and the Port, which explores the relationship between humans and nature. Paintings by Jadé Fadojutimi explore the constant exchange between bodies and their environment as our identities continue to evolve. Films including Jíibie (2019) by Laura Huertas Millán and Fog Dog (2020) by Daniel Steegmann Mangrané, together with sculptural works by Roland Persson, Kathleen Ryan and André Romão, propose ways in which we belong to the world beyond our physical boundaries, considering ourselves as nature, not just part of it.

The development of the Hub was made possible by funding from the Arts Council England, Liverpool City Council and European Regional Development Fund (ERDF). Whole Place Low Carbon Solutions, project is a green infrastructure and energy saving technology, partnership project led by Mersey Forest and Cheshire West and Chester Council. It is part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund.

Additional funding was provided by Livv Investment, part of Livv Housing Group. For more information visit https://livvinvestment.com/

More information about the programme:

Bluecoat Platform

Simon & Tom Bloor 

22 May – 26 September

Programme of live events July & August 2021

Created by artist duo Simon & Tom BloorBluecoat Platform, has been made in collaboration with Liverpool children from Out of the Blue, Bluecoat’s outreach art programme for children aged 5-11. The new sculpture is based on shapes developed by the children in workshops with the artists, in order to create a platform that brings some of Bluecoat’s artistic activities out of the building for the public to enjoy. The project focuses on providing activities for families, in light of the lack of opportunities for them to visit indoor attractions in recent months. Performers will be auditioned and selected by a group of local families who will work with Bluecoat’s Participation team to develop a programme of events – storytelling, music, comedy for kids and much more – designed to engage children of all ages.

Bluecoat Platform is one of 40 new projects taking place in and around 40 arts centres as part of Here and Now, a national and local celebration of culture within communities. Supported by Arts Council England and Future Arts Centres, marking the National Lottery’s 25th birthday. With additional support from Liverpool City Council Mayoral Inclusive Growth Fund, DCMS and Stowe Family Law.

Liverpool Biennial 2021

The Stomach and the Port

20 March – 6 June – exhibition extends until 5 September 2021 at Bluecoat. 

Liverpool Biennial is the UK’s largest festival of contemporary visual art. Taking over unexpected and public spaces, historic sites and art galleries, the Biennial has been transforming the city through art for over two decades. The 11th edition, The Stomach and the Port, explores notions of the body and ways of connecting with the world. 50 international artists and two collectives are taking part in this year’s Biennial. A dynamic programme of free exhibitions, performances, screenings and fringe events unfolds over 12 weeks, shining a light on the city’s vibrant cultural scene. Liverpool Biennial: The Stomach and the Port is curated by Manuela Moscoso.

Artists commissions at the heart of new Bluecoat Hub 

Harold OffehBabak Ganjei and Sumuyya Khader are among artists selected to create site specific artworks as part of Bluecoat’s Hub development, demonstrating the arts centre’s commitment to have artists’ work woven into the fabric of the building. 

The artist commissions are part of a scheme to redevelop Bluecoat’s entrance space (known as The Hub) to create a more welcoming and easy to navigate visitor experience. The scheme for the Grade I building has been developed by Architectural Emporium, a Liverpool based practice, in partnership with the Bluecoat team.

The artists were selected through a steering group including artist advisor Frances Disley and Bluecoat’s Senior Curator Adam Lewis-Smythe. 

Funding for the children and families has been provided by The Granada Foundation.