Bluecoat: at the Heart of Liverpool Culture
Our popular heritage display continues with an additional focus on the building’s architectural developments. Archival materials – drawings, plans and photographs – explore Bluecoat as home for a school of architecture, post-war renovations, Biq Architecten’s 2008 scheme, and artists’ architectural interventions – accompanied by a display of University of Liverpool architecture students’ responses to the building.
Art has been central to Bluecoat for over a century. The story begins when the charity school that had occupied the building since 1717 moved to larger premises in suburban Wavertree in 1906. The following year a group of artists, followed by University of Liverpool’s School of Architecture, moved into the vacant building and established a creative community that continues today. Formalised with the establishment of Bluecoat Society of Arts in 1927, the building was the U.K.’s first arts centre, housing visual and performing arts, social and educational events and working studios for artists, designers, architects and cultural societies.
This exhibition reflects developments in this period and features some of the artists and others who have contributed to making Bluecoat a vibrant centre for the contemporary arts. The selection comprises original artworks, artefacts and documentary material drawn from Bluecoat’s own and other archives, with a focus on key moments, programme highlights, participation activities and artists’ studios. It also looks at architectural developments, how the building has changed over time, and the importance of young people throughout Bluecoat’s history.
This exhibition, which continues in a changing display upstairs, runs throughout 2017. It is part of My Bluecoat, a year-long archive and participation project funded by Heritage Lottery Fund, in partnership with Blue Coat School, Liverpool Record Office and others.
Image: © Brian Roberts
at The Bluecoat
Liverpool, United Kingdom