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Today marks the tenth anniversary of Blue Room, Bluecoat’s inclusive arts project for learning disabled artists. Head of Engagement, Bec ...

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Welcome to autumn at Bluecoat

Welcome to autumn at Bluecoat -- here, Chief Executive Mary Cloake discusses our upcoming events and exhibitions. Read on to find out what we have on offer for you in September, October and November.

Our autumn season celebrates Bluecoat’s long-term commitment to diversity, to showcasing a wide variety of voices and perspectives both from Britain and overseas.

October brings the arrival of Keith Piper’s new exhibition Unearthing the Banker’s BonesThe exhibition sees Piper return to Bluecoat having previously exhibited here as a young artist 30 years ago, in Young Contemporaries. This annual exhibition, which set out to showcase emerging talent from British art schools, later went on to become Bloomberg New Contemporaries. Our connection with the exhibition continues, with the 2016 edition of the exhibition currently showing in our galleries until 16 October.

After Young Contemporaries, Bluecoat went on to work with Piper at key stages in his career: first in the exhibition Black Skin, Bluecoat in 1985, and again in Trophies of Empire in 1992.   

In Unearthing the Banker’s Bones Piper uses the science fiction device of a future perspective to cast light on our current concerns. Since uncertainty and unpredictability have come to dominate public life in Britain at present Piper’s investigations on video and canvas promise to be relevant and thought-provoking.

Artist Adham Faramawy, who is London-based and of Egyptian origin, comes to Bluecoat this autumn with his exhibition Janus Collapse (the juice-box edition) at an exciting moment in his career. Faramawy, another New Contemporaries alumnus, is specifically interested in how identity is affected and shaped by twenty-first-century technologies and advertising. It will be interesting to see how our audiences respond to his vibrant artworks in which bodily fluidity is a key motif and science-fiction again an influence.

Our long-running Blue Room project invites adults with learning disabilities to take part in a range of different arts activities. In Collaboration, with the help of artist Dave Evans, we celebrate the work of our project Out of the Blue, in which Blue Room members, supported by our participation team, deliver after-school arts clubs and holiday activities to children across Merseyside. An inclusive approach is also a feature of our Auto Agents exhibition which has been curated by a group of five people with learning disabilities working in association with artists from Liverpool’s The Royal Standard studio.

As part of our plan to strengthen links between the local artistic community and learning-disabled artists, dancer Mary Prestidge has been working closely with Blue Room members as part of INHABIT, our three-year programme of new and improvised dance. Look out for an evening event, Expanding the Picture, which will showcase their work together. 

Our events programme reflects both the international and local elements of our focus on diversity.  Highlights include Chinese performance artist Yuan Gong’s response to Heiner Müller’s Hamletmachine, while the new anthology from Nikesh Shukla entitled The Good Immigrant offers a timely focus on the issue of migration.

We can also look forward to Liverpool artist Nina Edge revisiting work from 2006, novelist Tom McCarthy’s performance with EVP sessions - bound to have an entrancing aura - our annual celebration of author Malcolm Lowry and Bluecoat-based events in the Liverpool Irish Festival.  Diverse, wide-ranging, innovative, city-central and yet close to home, we look forward to welcoming you to Bluecoat this autumn.

Tags:Exhibitions

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About the Bluecoat

Liverpool’s centre for the contemporary arts, Bluecoat showcases talent across visual art, music, dance, live art and literature. As the most ...

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