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Posts by Billy

Art in Liverpool podcast

31 January 2008 by Billy

DefNet Media have recently teamed up with Ian Jackson to start the Art in Liverpool podcast, providing a relentlessly enthusiastic look at the Liverpool visual arts scene. The latest show features “Out of Body at the Open Eye Gallery, Ian Meets the new Culture Secretary, Andy Burnham MP, ArtFinder Gallery… Ben Johnson… FACT PV, Tate PV… and the opening of the Arthur Dooley archive at the Liverpool Academy of Arts featuring Bryan Burgess and Carl Hodgeson”.  

Ben Johnson poses in front of a canvas at the Pier Head for a cameraman

Ben Johnson press call, October 2005

In a bonus this week, they’ve also released a recording of an interview with Ben Johnson at the Walker Art Gallery on Monday. Ben and Ian begin by discussing a 2005 press call (photograph above) and look at the development of the painting over the period since.

50 years of the lego brick

28 January 2008 by Billy

I’ve just noticed from the Google homepage that they are celebrating 50 years of the lego brick today. A great excuse to look again at 2005’s Walker Art Gallery installation by the Little Artists, Art Craziest Nation, which has consistently remained one of the most popular features on our site for the last couple of years.

A suited lego man stands before a lego shark in a lego fishtank

Damien Hirst’s ‘The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living’

Peter Doig, ‘Blotter’ and the John Moores prize

28 January 2008 by Billy

Painting of a winter scene showing a male figure in blue coat standing alone on a frozen lake.

Image copyright of the artist

Ahead of the comprehensive Peter Doig exhibition at Tate Britain  (5 February – 27 April 2008), yesterday’s Observer carried a great interview by Tim Adams with the artist.

When his ‘White Canoe’ sold for £5.7m last year it became the most expensive work ever sold by a European living artist, but his first big break was winning our John Moores prize in 1993 with ‘Blotter‘.

Doig discusses ‘Blotter’ in Saturday’s interview, including an interesting explanation of the painting’s title. The deadline to register for this September’s John Moores 25 is 15 February 2008. Read more…

Bill Viola’s ‘Observance’ returns

13 July 2007 by Billy

Observance‘, our video installation by Bill Viola, is back on display in the Walker Art Gallery. It was last seen in April 2005 shortly after it was purchased with assistance from the National Art Collections Fund in 2004.

Bill Viola's 'Observance'

‘Observance’ in Room One of the Walker Art Gallery

Rather than taking its place amongst contemporary items from the collection, curators have placed the work in Room One alongside works such as Ercole de’ Roberti’s ‘Pietà‘ and ‘The Lamentation over the Dead Christ‘. These are the sort of works that inspired by Viola to make his series ‘The Passions‘. Read more…

Mark McNulty’s blog

14 June 2007 by Billy

I noticed on Liverpool Blogs this morning that Mark McNulty now has his own blog.

Image from Street Life

Mark was one of the two photographers featured in our Street Life exhibition at the National Conservation Centre last year. His blog promises to ‘include news, recent photographs, published work and selections from the archive’.

William Holman Hunt’s ‘The Tuscan Girl’

13 June 2007 by Billy

'The Tuscan Girl', William Holman Hunt

This afternoon’s picture of the month talk at Lady Lever Art Gallery saw Sandra Penketh discussing William Holman Hunt’s ‘The Tuscan Girl’, now available to download (mp3/transcript/links).

The painting is in a private collection and is currently on a long term loan to the Lady Lever Art Gallery. In her talk Sandra looks at Holman Hunt’s early years, the formation of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood, his time in Italy and his aptitude for painting portraits of children.
Read more…

Julian Treuherz on ‘The Last Muster’

13 March 2007 by Billy

Julian Treuherz’s last speaking engagement before his retirement was delivering a picture of the month talk at the Lady Lever Art Gallery on Hubert von Herkomer’s ‘The Last Muster’. The talk is now available to download online (mp3/transcript/links). The painting portrays a group of Chelsea Pensioners in chapel. One of the men has  died during the service. The talk covers Herkomer’s time working on ‘The Graphic’, Van Gogh’s admiration for his work and the subject of death in Victorian painting.

Thank You Art Day 2007 in Liverpool

8 March 2007 by Billy

Gary Sollars in front of his painting in John Moores 24

Gary Sollars in front of his entry in John Moores 24

Germany-based Japanese artist Yoshiaki Kaihatsu began 39 Art Day in 2000 to increase appreciation of contemporary art in Japan. The name has something to do with 39 rhyming with ‘thank you’ in Japanese.  Tomorrow, Friday 9 March 2007, is 39 Art Day and this year Art in Liverpool have organised a series of offers and events in conjunction with independent artists and galleries in Liverpool.

The extensive listings include free origami cranes at the Artfinder gallery and free sake whilst viewing art at Sapporo Teppanyaki. We don’t have access to instant messenging at work, but anyone with a webcam and an MSN Messenger account might be interested in web cam performance art from Transvoyeur (1-4pm). Amongst the artists performing will be Gary Sollars, whose painting ‘When I Grow Up I Want To Go In There‘ was in last year’s John Moores 24. Read more…

Chinese New Year 2007 archived online

19 February 2007 by Billy

Chinese New Year 2007

Chinese New Year by Lizinha

Some Sundays, even living within ten minutes of your intended destination doesn’t get you there for midday, especially if there’s going to be loads of firecrackers and banging drums. Yesterday I wanted to photograph the Chinese New Year celebrations on Berry Street but didn’t quite make it in time. Thanks to Lizinha, Pete Carr, Peter, Indigo Goat, Spectral Shift and ijob, I don’t feel that I missed out.

Tim Brunsden at Liverpool Stories produced an excellent video of the events, while Art in Liverpool blogged about them.
Read more…

23 v 08

19 February 2007 by Billy

Mersey Bar Pilot Boat

We spent last Friday trying to kick some life into our ‘Figures of 08’ project. We put the project live in December but didn’t have the time to give it a proper publicity push. Marc wrote about ‘Figures of 08’ previously, it’s a capital of culture themed project that asks you to send us photographs of unintentional ’08’s that you come across. There’s a slideshow and a google map of the photographs submitted so far.

Discussing how to kickstart our project, Marc showed me a trailer for the new Jim Carrey film ‘The Number 23‘ on Friday. The film seems to be about a man who sees negative patterns in his life that always point to the number 23. I spent a pretty fruitless afternoon on Saturday looking for new ’08’s, it was annoying to walk out of the Maritime Museum and be confronted with what I now presume to be our nemesis number adorning the side of the pilot boat docked alongside. Read more…

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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.




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