2015 Events, Talks & Guided Visits

Annual Gardner-Medwin Lecture 2015 – Paul Scott

Thursday 22 October 2015, 2.30pm

We are delighted that Paul Scott – the artist, writer, educator and curator, of our forthcoming exhibition ‘Re- reanimate, repair, meld & mend’, will deliver an illustrated talk about his work for our annual lecture in memory of the founder of the Bluecoat Display Centre, Robert Gardner-Medwin.

Paul Scott is an artist best known for his research into ceramics and print. He creates individual pieces that blur the boundaries between fine art, craft and design.

His practice is diverse, so as well as making individual artworks, installations and artefacts for exhibition, he also works to commission, writes, teaches and curates.

“Clay is often seen as an expressive medium. Studio potters speak of their pleasure in handling the raw material, in exploring techniques, and in creating form. Paul Scott takes a different kind of pleasure in his work. His engagement is with the surface rather than the substance of the clay, and even then he shows little interest in experimenting with its formal qualities. Instead he emulates the look of mass produced consumer wares. In spite of this (or perhaps because of it) his work is unmistakable.  In Paul Scott’s hands domestic ceramics mutate into subversive comments on our life and times. His manipulation of the established vocabularies of printed motifs and patterns, and his use of the traditional blue and white, gives his work a particular resonance that leans on our recognition of its roots.” – Dr Jo Dahn, ‘Remember Me’ catalogue essay for exhibition held at the University of Wales 2001

Artist Talk – Mike Badger

Tuesday 22 September 2015, 1.30pm

The Athenaeum, Church Alley, Liverpool

As part of Bluecoat Display Centre’s ongoing programme of exciting artist’s talks, the next event will feature local artist Mike Badger. Mike will speak about his career.

From his Liverpool studio, Mike creates sculptures from recycled, brightly-coloured tin containers and other found objects, raising issues dealing with mass-production, Western consumerism and greed.

A traditional afternoon tea in the grand setting of The Athenaeum will follow the talk.

This event is open to current and new subscribing Friends of Bluecoat Display Centre and Members of The Athenaeum. Attendees must be over the age of 14.

Guided Visit – Liverpool Baltic Creative Triangle Walking Tour

Wednesday 16 September 2015

A walking tour of the Baltic Triangle – an historic city central area, which is enjoying a steady renaissance making it one of ‘the’ places to set up shop and hang out. Just a stone’s throw from Albert Dock, the city’s World Heritage Site, and shopping hot-spot Liverpool One, the Triangle has been reclaimed and resurrected by a growing colony of creative people, entrepreneurs and their combined businesses.


10.45am – Meet at Siren café on ground floor of Women’s Organisation building, 54 St James Street, L1 0AB for tea or coffee. There is also an option to meet at the Bluecoat Display Centre.

11.15am – Guided tour of Castle Fine Arts Foundry’s Liverpool workshop by Barry Callaghan.

Castle Fine Arts provide fine art casting and fabrication services, skills and facilities to enlarge, cast, fabricate, finish and install sculptures of any size and complexity.

This is a special opportunity to see the highly skilled work of a foundry and their current projects: “The breadth and quality of our work, the craftsmanship, the great artists we work with and the life the sculptures take on in the big wide world, forms a rich tapestry.”

12 noon – Talk at Unit 51 by Mark Lawler, Baltic Creative Managing Director.

Baltic Creative CIC was established in 2009 to provide space for the creative & digital sector and to play a major role in the regeneration of the Baltic Triangle area of Liverpool. 5 years on… the space is fully let supporting businesses and creating jobs and the area is home to a vibrant community of creatives and technologists.

2pm – Visit to glass maker Jenny Barker and the Melt Designs glass studio.

Melt Designs is one of the UK’s most innovative glass art companies with an established reputation for designing and making truly outstanding and original glass artwork. Jen is our creative director and responsible for all of our designs. Following studies in Glass Design at Wolverhampton and Staffordshire Universities, Jenny set up her first studio in 1997 and then founded Melt Designs a couple of years later. A leader in her field, Jen’s in-depth knowledge of various glass processes means she can always match our client’s expectations for stunning glass art solutions.

Finish about 3pm when you will have the opportunity to wander round the area to discover more creative enterprises.

Garden Party 2015

Sunday 19 July 2015, 10am – 5pm

All donations, raffle, workshop, stall sales & other proceeds from this event will fund local artists residencies.

Featuring: artists taster workshops by Elizabeth Willow & Sian Hughes (details below); artists demos, including pottery by David Backhouse & basketmaking by Peter Howcroft; live music from Mike Badger; food & drink; plant, flowers & garden accessories stalls; Bluecoat Display Centre craft & book stalls; home produce stalls; Postcode Honey stall; and childrens’ face painting (supported by Cass Art).

All family-friendly.

Fundraiser Raffle Prize Draw, prizes will include: Bed & breakfast for two at Hope Street Hotel; Helen Chatterton silk Liverpool map scarf; Lynda Roberts framed Palm House Collage; Meal for two at Pen Factory (up to £40); Linda-Jeanne Jones silver bangle; two bottles of wine from R&H Fine Wines; a pair of Jackson Pollock exhibition tickets at Tate Liverpool; four tickets for The Odyssey in October & tour of the Everyman Theatre; Kit Taylor original pen & ink drawing; LoveLambrusco pack of fine Italian wine; Jar of Postcode Honey; OPI manicure or pedicure by Sue Aigner; a pair of Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra tickets; Teresa Cadwallader jewellery; an original print by Gill Curry; a David Backhouse ceramic piece (which can be personalised); and more…

Raffle tickets are available now from the Bluecoat Display Centre – £1 per ticket or 6 for £5. All proceeds to fund local artists residencies. If you can’t make it on the day please support us by calling in and buying some raffle tickets.

The draw will take place at our Garden Party on Sunday 19 July 2015.


Sian Hughes will run three cyanotype taster workshops during the Garden Party, each will be for 30 minutes, £5 per person and will be happening at 1.30pm, 2.15pm and 3pm.

The wonderful Elizabeth Willow will be making corsages, buttonholes and head-dresses from garden greenery available to buy at the Garden Party for a minimum donation of £5.

Our event is kindly supported by The Bluecoat, Lunya, Cass Art & Hope Street Hotel.

Guided Visit – Sheffield Assay Office & David Mellor Round Building

Thursday 4 June 2015

Meet outside Bdc entrance on College Lane, opposite Lunya, to depart on the coach at 8.45am.

Arrive at 11am at Sheffield Assay Office for coffee and a talk by Emma Paragreen, Librarian & Curator. This will be followed by the opportunity to view their impressive silver collection which numbers more than 1,000 items of silver and silver plate – dating right back to the very first year of the Assay Office in 1773 and spanning the centuries right up to the present day. Each year a commission is made to add to the collection. Finally, a unique behind the scenes tour of the precious metal assaying and hallmarking services.

A buffet lunch provided by the Assay Office is included in the price.

We will then drive to Hathersage, to the David Mellor Visitor Centre in a village near Chatsworth in one of the most beautiful areas of Derbyshire, to visit the David Mellor Cutlery Factory, the new Design Museum, the Country Shop and Café – all on the same site.

The company was set up by David Mellor, Royal Designer for Industry. Mellor is a key figure in British design with an international reputation as designer, manufacturer and shopkeeper. Born in Sheffield, he has always specialised in metalwork and he is particularly famous for his cutlery design. David Mellor cutlery is manufactured in a purpose-designed modern factory The Round Building, designed by Sir Michael Hopkins, has won numerous architectural awards. A perfect afternoon for those who admire great architecture and design as well as those who love to cook and eat.

Return to Liverpool by coach, aiming to be back by 5.30pm.

Guided Visit – Graduate Degree Exhibition 2015, Liverpool Hope University

Tuesday 2 June 2015

Meet at 10am at the reception, The Cornerstone Gallery, Liverpool Hope University, The Creative Campus, Shaw Street, Liverpool, L6 1HP.

An opportunity to visit Liverpool Hope University to see the final year exhibition of art works by the students. This will include work by the graduate whom Bluecoat Display Centre have awarded a spotlight exhibition, which will take place at the Display Centre during later in 2015.

Guided Visit – Riverside Walking Tour with John Curry

Thursday 21 May 2015

Meet at 1.30pm outside the Maritime Museum.

To link in with our ‘Mersey Maritime’ exhibition, join the retired Liverpool Pilot, lifeboat man and author John Curry for an informative two-hour guided walk along the River Mersey. John’s 49-year career on the river will offer a unique perspective from a man who knows it’s waters so well.

The walk will start at 1.30pm outside the Maritime Museum at the Albert Dock, through some of the dock system exploring the history of the maritime trade, buildings and piloting stories. The afternoon will conclude at the Bluecoat Display Centre with refreshments and a curator’s talk about the exhibition.

John’s book ‘East a Half South,’ which includes many anecdotes from his pilotage service, will be available to buy at the Display Centre.

The walk will take approx. 2 hours.

Artist Talk – Libby Bower

Tuesday 14 April 2015, 1.30pm

The Athenaeum, Church Alley, Liverpool

As part of Bluecoat Display Centre’s ongoing programme of exciting artist’s talks, the next event will feature local illustration artist Libby Bower. Libby will speak about her career to date.

Libby Bower is a graduate in Theatre and Performance Design BA (Hons). She trained firstly as a costume designer. Her work is primarily informed by this discipline. Libby will demonstrate how she creates illustrations using collage and brings them alive with additions such as feathers, coloured inks, broken jewellery and other found objects etc.

She will also do a demonstration on a mannequin showing how she re-uses old, unwanted clothing and materials to create unique and quirky costume designs. Libby strives to use materials which might be considered useless or disposable. Upcycling and and reinvention are key aspects of her costume work. This discipline is called ‘deconstruction’ and is used in the theatre world due to its benefits of affordablility, speed and ease.

This process of costume making is reminiscent of her illustrative work (which can be seen at Bluecoat Display Centre) in that she reinvents old materials in a ‘textural’ way, similar to collage. Libby also gives practical lectures at LIPA on deconstruction. She has made costumes for several shows using this technique alone.

Due to her enjoyment of these processes, Libby has recently been making small costume design drawings for the greetings card industry. (Libby has also worked for Liverpool Philharmonic Hall, Unity Theatre, Liverpool Paul McCartney Theatre and other independent theatre companies.)

A traditional afternoon tea in the grand setting of The Athenaeum will follow the talk.

This event is open to current and new subscribing Friends of Bluecoat Display Centre and Members of The Athenaeum. Attendees must be over the age of 14.

Guided Visit – Whitworth Art Gallery

Tuesday 3 March 2015

A unique opportunity to spend the day at the newly refurbished Whitworth Art Gallery – now double its original size with newly created spaces to explore.


9.15am – Arrive outside BDC entrance on College Lane for minibus to the Whitworth.

10.30am – Arrival at the Whitworth for coffee and a special guided tour by a curator of the new developments and extension.

Lunch at café.

Afternoon – Opportunity to look at new exhibitions, including a mjor solo exhibition by Cornelia Parker and an exciting exhibition in the new landscape gallery, as well as a re-hang of the permanent collections.

Return by mini bus at 3.30pm from the Whitworth, to arrive in Liverpool at approx. 5pm.

Trip to be led by Gill Curry and Linda Jeanne Jones.

Artist Talk – Caroline Gregson

Tuesday 24 February 2015, 1.30pm

The Athenaeum, Church Alley, Liverpool

As part of Bluecoat Display Centre’s ongoing programme of exciting artist’s talks, the next event will feature Cheshire based artist Caroline Gregson. Caroline weaves using Willow to create unique sculptures. She will speak about her career and influences.

Caroline says “Willow is such a fantastic material to use in sculpture. I use one year old growth (withies or rods) from coppiced willow trees, some of which I grow and harvest locally myself. It would be hard to think of a more sustainable material. I love to represent movement and vitality in my work.”

A traditional afternoon tea in the grand setting of The Athenaeum will follow the talk.

This event is open to current and new subscribing Friends of Bluecoat Display Centre and Members of The Athenaeum. Attendees must be over the age of 14.