Bluecoat Display Centre originated as one of this country’s earliest craft galleries in 1959.
Bdc was founded by Robert Gardner-Medwin, Professor of Architecture at Liverpool University, with the aim of promoting and displaying the work of leading designers of decorative objects of the time from a large studio in the Bluecoat Chambers, where he also had his private architecture practice.
Gardner-Medwin intended the work shown at the Display Centre to enhance good architecture and interior design, and today we find we are still the place that collectors, craft enthusiasts and those who appreciate and support excellence in craft and design visit.
Over the past 60 years the Bdc has established a national reputation for promoting and selling the finest contemporary craft. Over six decades we have shown the work of seminal British craft makers and supported the early careers of new makers. We have offered a showcase for hundreds of makers from the North West and across the UK from our gallery in Liverpool, as well as at major national and international collectors fairs like Collect and the Sculptural Object and Functional Art Fair (SOFA) in Chicago. Through our exhibitions we have also introduced our audience to makers working across Europe, Australia and the USA.
Bdc became a registered charity in 2010 and over the past ten years has developed an ambitious outreach programme working with leading Merseyside makers in our local community, to promote the proven benefit of regular craft activities on health and mental well-being.
Robert Gardner-Medwin’s original ethos continues today as Bluecoat Display Centre continues to lead the way in contemporary craft.