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Making An Impact

Making An Impact / Tuesday 1st May - Tuesday 30th April

Bluecoat Display Centre is pleased to announce the launch of the first stage of our new 3-year, integrated outreach programme ‘Making an Impact’.

Using new and established relationships with partner organisations, and the communities within them, we are developing a detailed participation and learning programme. This will involve a high quality contemporary craft experience facilitated by the UK’s leading practitioners and coordinated by Bluecoat Display Centre.

Working with new audiences from a wider variety of communities, many of whom might not have had the opportunity to experience contemporary craft in the past, and based both in Liverpool City Centre, at the venues of the partner organisations, and beyond, we will extend our reach and programming in an immersive and integrated way.

Partner organisations include the Royal Liverpool Teaching Hospital and Hope University Everton Campus, both of which we have longstanding relationships of working with creatively.

Through discussion, demonstration, exhibition and participation, we will be working with partner organisations, young people and community groups across Merseyside to shape and form the direction that Bluecoat Display Centre’s artistic programme develops over the next 3 years, and giving them a platform to express and explore the finest contemporary crafts being produced in the UK.

This years project includes 2 day workshops with various health groups including groups within the PSS charity, and the Wirral Autistic Society. It also includes artist residencies in The Royal Liverpool Hospital, Holly Lodge Girls School, and North Liverpool as part of the Beautiful North Project.

There will also be an International Residency, with Irish ceramicist Sara Flynn spending 6 weeks in Liverpool Hope University.

With thanks for the financial support of:

Printgranada-logo-webHemby trust


And project supporters:


PGCE Advert.eps   ROWAN_LOGO_colour



Kirsti-Hannah Brown at the Avenue Project (PSS) / Wednesday 17th October - Thursday 18th October

The ceramic workshop with the Avenue Project took place on 17th and 18th of October and was a huge success. (see photos) The group made pinch pots, slab pots and many made personalised tiles for members of their family, with ceramicist Kirsti Hannah Brown.

Becky Waite with the Wirral Autistic Society / Monday 19th November - Friday 23rd November

A small group of adults with autism were hosted at the Bluecoat, and over two day-long workshops we explored a range of stitching and weaving techniques.

Find out more abut how the workshop went here


Invasive Ivy at the Royal Liverpool Hospital / Wednesday 19th September - Wednesday 10th October

The Royal Hospital residency took place over four Wednesdays between the 19th September and 10th October, and was very successful, both in terms of the work created and the enhanced patient experience. Over 60 patients took part, and many commented on their reduced levels of stress.

Patients in the Haematology Department waiting room were invited to contribute to an art installation by working with artist Julie Dodd to create vine leaves out of recycled plastic milk bottles.

For more information and images click here.


Helen Chatterton, Artist in Residence at Holly Lodge Girls School / Wednesday 30th January - Wednesday 27th February

Helen Chatterton will spend four weeks working with Holly Lodge Girls School, teaching children and adult to knit.

They will explore yarn bombing and create installations, whilst also teaching them a skill that will stay with them.

This residency is generously supported by Craft Club UK and Rowan wool


Nawal Gebreel textiles workshop with Spinning World / Tuesday 22nd January - Wednesday 23rd January

Textile artist Nawal Gebreel will work with PSS group Spinning World, to create silk scarves using printing and painting techniques.

International Artist in Residence / Monday 14th January - Sunday 3rd March

Irish ceramicist Sara Flynn will spend 6 weeks at Liverpool Hope University, using the time to develop her career and be able to fully participate in academic life during the residency.

During her time here, Sara will mentor students, give talks and demonstrations, give a tour of our coinciding exhibition, and create a collaborative piece with Hope graduate Naomi Robinson, and tutor Alan Whittaker.

Sian Hughes - Artist in Residence at the Royal Liverpool Hospital Radiology Department / Thursday 7th March - Thursday 28th March

Sian Hughes is a Liverpool based artist who explores cyanotypes, and its potential through layering, text, photography, fabric and bookmaking.  Sian runs wide range of workshops to enthuse other people to this vibrant camera-less photographic medium.

Sian will spend 4 weeks in the radiology department of the Royal Liverpool Hospital, using x-rays of personal items to create intricate layered designs which will be displayed in the department.


Rachael Howard - Screen Printing workshop with the Umbrella Centre / Friday 8th February - Friday 15th February

Rachael Howard has a fascination with drawing, particularly people , observing their postures, expressions and actions in spontaneous sketches – often humorous studies of human behaviour. These drawings are translated into graphic, screen-printed, appliquéd and machine embroidered narrative images – beautifully crafted and exactingly worked motifs. Rachael expresses events through drawing, fabrics and stitch, using image, text and object to tell – often autobiographical – stories of the everyday.

Rachael will work with a mental health group at the Umbrella Centre, to create designs which will then be displayed at Threshold Festival on Sunday 10th March.

Ailie Rutherford at the Wildflower Centre / Wednesday 27th March - Thursday 4th April

Ailie Rutherford’s practice is fuelled by dialogues on the future of places, utopias and dystopias. Through the use of mysterious pseudo-psychic experiments, she initiates automatic drawinginviting people to depict their desires, aspirations and dreams. Recent works have explored the bizare evidence that plants have an ability to preconceive events, transmitting that knowledge to humans.

For her residency at National Wildflower Centre, Ailie will be inviting participants to tap into the clairvoyant abilities of plants and work together to build a model of our shared visions of the future.

This event is open to all to participate, please just turn up to the Wildflower Centre between 10am and 2pm on the following dates: Wednesday 27th March, Thursday 28th March, Wednesday 3rd April, Thursday 4th April

Kirsti-Hannah Brown with the Siblings Group / Friday 8th February - Friday 22nd February

Ceramicist Kirsti-Hannah Brown worked with the PSS Siblings Group to celebrate their 10 year anniversary. The Siblings Group is a support network for young people who have a brother or sister with a disability. Its a place where they can find help and support and enjoy their time with others in a similar situation.

Kirsty helped them to create a ceramic plaque which they then decorated and mounted to signify 10 years of the group.

Robbie Manning with the PSS Dementia Befriending Service / Friday 8th March - Friday 15th March

Local Ceramicist Robbie Manning hosted a 2-day workshop with the PSS Dementia Befriending Service, teaching service users to create simple pots and sculptures. They were then fired in a kiln and put on permanent display at the PSS head office.

Curating in the Community

First Meeting: Friday 18th January at 11am

Members of our Curating in the Community groups are invited to work with us on one of our external display cabinets in the Athenaeum, a private members club founded in 1797, which is just outside the Bluecoat. It is a small cabinet display, but we keep the display refreshed as it acts as a good marketing tool for the gallery. We also sell artworks from inside the cabinet to the public.

We would like 2-4 people to come to the gallery and choose items which inspire them, or a collection of objects based on a chosen theme to create a display for this cabinet.

You will need to consider the audience, display techniques, security and potential sales.

If you would like to curate this cabinet, email crafts@bluecoatdisplaycentre.com or phone 0151 709 4014, spaces are limited and will be on a first come first served basis.


Form more information contact crafts@bluecoatdisplaycentre.com