Our venues


Posts tagged with 'biennial'

Unique dazzle ship installation – for one weekend only!

8 September 2015 by Sam

ship painted in bright contrasting stripes

Last year when OMD played two sell-out gigs at the Museum of Liverpool, concert-goers were also treated to a special installation on the Edmund Gardner pilot ship. For one weekend only, we are offering visitors another opportunity to experience this, as curator Ben Whitaker explains:

“Join us on 3 and 4 October when we will take you on a tour deep inside the Edmund Gardner Dazzle Ship to experience a unique audio visual installation.

Called ‘Dazzle Ships (Parts I, IV, V & VI)’, the installation uses music, sound and lighting to immerse you into the world of a dazzle ship under attack Read more…

Dazzling tea cosies for the Edmund Gardner

3 September 2015 by Sam

colourful tea cosy in front of a ship painted with a similar pattern

Gina’s dazzle ship inspired tea cosy

This summer Chris Moseley, shipkeeping and models conservator, took over responsibility for the Edmund Gardner pilot ship – the largest item in our collections and probably the brightest since it was dazzled last year.

Along with 700 tons of ship he also inherited a couple of old tea pots and had a tea pot polishing competition with George, one of the volunteers on the ship. The results were so good that they decided they needed two new tea cosies, so they asked if National Museums Liverpool’s knitting group, the Knitwits, could help.

One of our knitters, Gina Couch, jumped at the chance to help, as she had a family connection to the Edmund Gardner. Her late brother Gerard, who was known as Sam by most people, worked for the Pilotage Service from 1949 to 1988, so he had worked on the Edmund Garner when it was used as a pilot vessel between 1953 and 1981.  Read more…

Be dazzled in half term

27 May 2015 by Jen

Carved ship before painting

A work in progress…

Are you stuck for something to do with the kids this half term?  You could take a trip on the Mersey ferry Snowdrop on 27-31 May, which has been transformed with a fantastic dazzle inspired artwork designed by Sir Peter Blake.  Dazzle was a scheme created in the First World War which saw Allied ships painted in outlandish designs to make them more difficult to target by enemy U-boats. Read more…

Dazzle ferry exhibition

2 April 2015 by Sam

artist Sir Peter Blake on the colourfully decorated ferry

Sir Peter Blake, patron of the John Moores Painting Prize, on the Snowdrop dazzle ferry

This morning the dazzled Mersey ferry Snowdrop, painted with an amazing dazzle inspired design by Sir Peter Blake, sailed across the river for the first time. From the fantastic reaction of the commuters, tourists and press on board today it looks set to become a popular attraction on the river.

There’s more to the dazzle ferry than the colourful exterior though, as Merseyside Maritime Museum curator Ben Whittaker has co-curated an on board exhibition with Tate Liverpool. Read more…

Dazzle ship prints at the Walker

13 October 2014 by Lisa

Dazzle ship prints

Curator Alex Patterson with the dazzle ship prints.

You might already know that there is a bold ‘dazzle ship’ of ours in Liverpool’s docks at the moment, but did you know about our set of striking dazzle prints at the Walker? Assistant curator of fine art, Alex Patterson, gives us the story behind the art…

“As we commemorate the centenary of World War I, we thought it would be a wonderful opportunity to display our rarely seen ‘dazzle’ prints at the Walker Art Gallery. These fantastic images were made by the British artist Edward Wadsworth (1889-1949) and are inspired by the concept of ‘dazzle camouflage’. Read more…

John Moores Painting Prize: debating art

22 April 2014 by Laura

Three peple looking at a painting

(Left to right) Jurors, Lynette Yiadom-Boakye, Tom Benson and Tim Marlow

It’s been a busy few weeks for the John Moores Painting Prize. We recently announced the longlist, or those 52 artists who have been selected for the exhibition. This was the culmination of an arduous judging process which began with more than 2,500 entries

This year I spent some time in the judging room and got to see first hand how the selection is made.  Read more…

‘…the best of all art awards’

30 October 2013 by Laura

Artists and painting

Sarah Pickstone and Sir Peter Blake either side of Sarah’s first prize winning ‘Stevie Smith and the Willow’

John Moores Painting Prize 2012 winner, Sarah Pickstone shares her thoughts on winning the coveted prize: Read more…

A sign of great hospitality

9 November 2012 by Kay

plaque with tourism symbols on a Union Jack flag

This year’s Biennial theme – Hospitality and the Unexpected Guest – made me think of this great object in the Museum of Liverpool’s collection. It is a plaque awarded to the City of Liverpool by Dutch reality TV programme ‘Nu we er toch zijn’.

A film crew from the show travelled around the country to determine how hospitable certain cities were. They would knock on stranger’s doors and ask if they could stay the night! Liverpool, of course, was one of the few cities to receive the gold award. The programme showed some great Liverpool characters and proved what a friendly and hospitable city we are.

John Moores Painting Prize Summit

29 October 2012 by Laura

Woman and painting

Sarah Pickstone with her first prize winning ‘Stevie Smith and the Willow’

Media office volunteer, Louise Beard, has taken a look at a weekend of debate and workshops on the future of paint and the John Moores Painting Prize:

Every two years, Liverpool platforms a showcase of contemporary art in the Liverpool Biennial. The John Moores Painting Prize is an important part of this, plucking out some of the best contemporary painting work in the UK. Read more…

Liverpool Merchant’s Heritage Trail

30 August 2012 by Ann

Liverpool is a city steeped in  maritime history. But while you might expect to find tales of smuggler’s coves and bravery at sea in Merseyside Maritime Museum,  the city  itself can surprise you with  many stories of its seafaring and merchant links.

photograph of the rear exterior of sudley house showing the conservatory and rose garden

Sudley  House, former home of George Holt

I was  recently introduced to Helen Fowler from The Monro pub on Duke Street  and after a quick coffee and  a chat I discovered not only were The Monro hosting an installation for Liverpool Biennial , but it is also a building bursting with historic tales to tell . I found out about the steam ship which it is named after and its former owner Colonel John Bolton . He was the most wealthy Liverpool merchant of his generation  and  no doubt inspired George Holt who lived just across town at Sudley House in Mossley Hill.  Read more…

About our blog

Welcome to the National Museums Liverpool blog! Written by our staff and volunteers, we’ll give you a peek behind the scenes of our museums and galleries.

Award-winning blog

corpcomms awards winner logo




We try to ensure that the information provided on our blog is accurate and that appropriate permissions to use images have been sought. The opinions in each blog are very much those of the individuals writing.