Bluecoat has been at the heart of Liverpool’s cultural life for three centuries. They’re delighted that a book telling its fascinating story is now published.
Bluecoat, Liverpool: The UK’s First Arts Centre charts the building’s transition from eighteenth-century charity school to pioneering centre for the arts.
Edited by Artistic Director Bryan Biggs and eminent Liverpool historian John Belchem, the publication includes chapters by invited writers on key strands, including visual art, music, performance, the building’s creative community, its origins as a charity school and its distinctive architecture.
The book sheds light on the port’s religious and mercantile environment, including transatlantic slavery and educational philanthropy, from which Bluecoat emerged, and how echoes of these continue to inform their work with artists. The predominant focus is on an inclusive building, where ‘village hall meets the avant-garde’.
Copies of the book are available from publishers Liverpool University Press or local book shops.