The Cooperative – New strand for Liverpool Biennial


Sounds exciting, looking forward to this new development for the Biennial.

New strand for Liverpool Biennial recognises important art collectives in the city.

The Cooperative is a collective of collectives led by seven of the foremost artist groups in the city – providing a high-impact, high-visibility platform for creative and discursive activity during the internationally renowned Liverpool Biennial festival.

Joining the various strands of the International festival as part of one of Europe’s biggest contemporary arts festivals, this is the first activity of its kind, aiming to bring new audiences and international attention to one of the best-regarded local arts scenes in the UK. The Cooperative will showcase the work of its collective membership – representing more than 50 artists – alongside a selection of artists from further afield, reflecting the internationalist over-arching aesthetic of the city.  Through a combination of new print, organised tours, and an ambitious artist-run space at a disused paint shop on Renshaw Street, The Cooperative  will open-up the Liverpool scene to the initiated and uninitiated alike.

This initiative is run in partnership by the nationally and internationally active organisations:
•    Mercy the live literature specialists,
•    anarchic public artists Jump Ship Rat,
•    and experimental music collective Sound Network,
•    alongside the multi-faceted studios and independent galleries, Red Wire, Lost Soul and Stranger Service Station, Arena Gallery and Studios and The Royal Standard.

This new approach by the collective scene in Liverpool is indicative of the strength, ambition and vision of artists groups resident in the city, and reflects a wider surge in the influence of multi-talented artist-run organisations internationally – a trend that has seen interdisciplinary and collaborative methods dominate much of the central dialogue around contemporary art, and even move into the pop sphere, where musicians and film-makers are now keen to be seen working in across creative disciplines.

Project Manager, Nathan Jones of Mercy, says
“It’s been many years in the making, and we’re proud to be the ones that are making this a reality,  to provide a genuine central hub for people interested in what constitutes Liverpool’s amazingly diverse arts scene – and hopefully tip the balance on what is generally perceived as a festival of work from outside the city.”

Alongside a host of new artworks and an exciting performance programme, people visiting The Cooperative’s Old Paint Shop space on Renshaw Street, will be able to access a specially commissioned library and archive of work by artists based in Liverpool.

Contents of the Old Paint Shop also includes a workshops and dialogue space for visiting and resident artists to share ideas, and a weekly rolling exhibition, including new work by Liverpool Art Prize nominees, and artists brought from around Europe.  The space also features a shop-front installation by the legendary Parisian squatter-artist Yabon Paname and Jump Ship Rat, and a performance space by Mercy, sponsored by Diesel.

The Cooperative
The Old Paint Shop
28-32 Renshaw Street, Liverpool, L1 4EF

Press opening 1.00-6.00pm, Thursday 16th September
Private View 4.00-9.00pm, Friday 17th September

Open Weds-Sun 1pm-5pm, 18th September until 29th November
with special openings, discussions, workshops and performances every week

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