Photography: Mark McNulty

Liverpool Biennial
Various – until 27/06

Firing the starter pistol for IRL culture taking place this year, Liverpool Biennial has announced a roster of outdoor public artworks to begin the 2021 festival. Sculptures and installations from the likes of Larry Achiampong, Linder and Rashid Johnson are being unveiled across the city, while an online Portal showcases sonic and digital commissions as the event extends its opening dates to beyond 27 June. The initial ‘outside’ chapter of the festival will be followed by an ‘inside’ chapter in Spring, as museums and galleries are permitted to open to the public.

The festival officially opens to the public on Saturday 20 March, at which point sculptures and installations throughout Liverpool will celebrate the city’s architecture and outdoor spaces. Flags by artist Larry Achiampong can be found at 10 locations from the Cunard Building to St George’s Hall.

Other commissions include Rashid Johnson’s Stacked Heads at Canning Dock Quayside, a piece by Teresa Solar at Exchange Flags and Linder’s Bower Of Bliss at Liverpool One. Close by, the mural Mauvais Alphabet by Jorgge Menna Barreto has been unveiled on the side of Bluecoat.


Bower of Bliss (2021) by Linder at Liverpool ONE. Photograph by Mark McNulty

Biennial Online Portal will also launch on 20 March with three sonic and digital commissions available to experience. Transmission: A Series Of Five Podcasts On Disease and Pandemics In A Distorted World is by Ines Doujak in collaboration with John Barker. Artists UBERMORGEN, digital human Leonardo Impett and curator Joasia Krysa form a digital experiment reimagining the future of curating in the light of AI. As part of the learning programme, KeKeÇa Body Percussion Ensemble are inviting schools and the public to participate in live-streamed workshops.

The theme of this year’s festival is The Stomach and The Port with the timely aim of exploring concepts of the body as fluid and being continuously shaped by – while actively shaping its – environment. In May, the Biennial’s partner venues will begin opening for the ‘inside’ chapter of activity. FACT host an exhibit by Black Obsidian Sound System (B.O.S.S), a London based collective who bring together queer, trans and non-binary black and people of colour involved in art, sound and radical activism through projects influenced by sound system culture. Hong Kong-based artist Zheng Bo will also exhibit at the Ropewalks square venue. The artist creates weedy gardens, living slogans and eco-queer films.


Zheng Bo, Pteridophilia 2 (film still), 2018

Tate Liverpool host work from Jamaican artist Ebony G. Patterson who works with embellished textiles to explore post-colonialism, working-class identity and other disenfranchised communities. Other venues welcoming Biennial activity include Open Eye, Bluecoat and the Victoria Gallery and Museum.

Read our interview with Biennial artist Serafine1369 from issue 112 here.

Bido Lito Liverpool Bido Lito Liverpool