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Liverpool’s waterfront welcomes new mural celebrating city’s icons

3 weeks ago

Liverpool’s waterfront welcomes new mural celebrating city’s icons
ACC Artwork - Close up John Lennon detail Image courtesy Pete Carr

The city has just gained another artistic gem with the unveiling of a fantastic new mural on Liverpool’s waterfront.

The new mural on Liverpool’s waterfront, located at ACC Liverpool, celebrates the city’s talent across sport, art, comedy, and drama.

Crafted by artist Joseph Venning, the mural serves as a visual ode to the iconic figures who have left their mark on Liverpool’s cultural landscape throughout different eras.

The mural has been funded by Liverpool BID Company’s Art & Culture Fund and has been developed by ACC Liverpool and dot-art. 

Stretching 40m, and two metres high, the mural can be seen by visitors as they arrive at ACC Liverpool, next to the Pullman Hotel and Exhibition Centre Liverpool. With a design inspired by Sir Peter Blake’s eye-catching collage style, evoking his iconic Sergeant Pepper album sleeve, the mural depicts a wide range of cultural figures, from George Stubbs to Holly Johnson. 

ACC Artwork-Holly Johnson detail Image courtesy Pete Carr
ACC Artwork-Holly Johnson detail Image courtesy Pete Carr

The artwork is divided into five key themes; music, sport, comedy, drama, and visual art. Figures from each field are depicted in the artworks.

The first section depicts Liverpool’s rich music history, celebrating the faces of well known artists like Sir Paul McCartney to The Las and Spice Girl Mel C. Famous venues like Eric’s and nation are also included.

The comedy section is a nod to Liverpool’s famous sense of humour, with the late Paul O’Grady’s iconic Lily Savage depicted alongside Sir Ken Dodd and John Bishop.

ACC Artwork-John Conteh detail Image courtesy Pete Carr
ACC Artwork-John Conteh detail Image courtesy Pete Carr

The visual art collection includes Little Girl Giant, Sir Antony Gormley’s Another Place at Crosby Beach, George Stubbs and Sir Peter Blake’s Dazzle Ferry.

The Drama section references Liverpool’s theatres and stage talent, including Stephen Graham, Jodie Comer, Kim Cattrell alongside the city’s literary greats including Frank Cottrell Boyce and Beryl Bainbridge.

Sports covers talents from Beth Tweddle to boxing legends Natasha Jonas and John Conteh. 

ACC Artwork-Close up sports Image courtesy Pete Carr
ACC Artwork-Close up sports Image courtesy Pete Carr

Gemma McLoughlin, Executive Assistant for Projects at ACC Liverpool, said:

“It is a priority for us to ensure the ACC Liverpool campus adds value to our local community by promoting happiness and wellbeing, with art firmly at the core. We developed the idea for a mural that celebrated our city and its people to enrich the urban space. We were thrilled when our application for arts and culture funding was successful, allowing us to work with local, independent gallery dot-art and artist Joe Venning on the installation.

“Seeing the finished mural so lively and larger than life is wonderful and it really elevates our campus welcome. Art really does have the potential to influence the way we think and feel and It’s clear to see it is already having a positive effect on visitors. We see people spend ages there, admiring all the different elements and taking pictures and selfies.

“Joe has done a fantastic job of capturing the city’s diverse achievements, creating a truly inspirational piece of art that will undoubtedly be admired by many for years to come.”

ACC Artwork - Artist Joseph Venning Image courtesy Pete Carr
ACC Artwork – Artist Joseph Venning Image courtesy Pete Carr

Artist Joe Venning said:

“The idea of this design was to create a wall that is a celebration of Liverpudlians. It highlights diverse achievements in various fields, to both visitors to the city and locals alike; hopefully inspiring them to think ‘If they can do it, so can I.

“Highlights of the painting process include being tapped on the shoulder by Natasha Jonas to thank me for including her, and discovering, courtesy of Lady Anne Dodd, that I had placed Ken Dodd between one of his key influences, Arthur Askey, and Paul O’Grady, who always credited Ken as one of his heroes!”

Lady Anne Dodd said:

“Joe has done a wonderful job bringing Ken to life and what is incredible is that he placed him right between his own hero Arthur Askey and the lovely Paul O’Grady who told me himself that Ken was his comedy hero.  All his family would watch Doddy’s TV specials and the house would ring with laughter and Ken’s Knotty Ash inspired him to create his own fantasy world around the little fishing village of Birkenhead where Lily Savage lived.”

Lady Anne Dodd by the new mural on Liverpool's waterfront. Image courtesy Pete Carr
Lady Anne Dodd by the new mural on Liverpool’s waterfront. Image courtesy Pete Carr

Lucy Byrne, dot-art, said:

“We were over the moon to be asked to work on this large-scale work in such a prominent position, which we hope will soon become a local landmark! Joe was the perfect artist for this mural and has turned a nondescript wall into an inspiring cultural welcome to the ACC site.”

Bill Addy, CEO at Liverpool BID Company, said:

“We are delighted to be able to support this incredible work. It is a fitting tribute to the cultural talent that has put Liverpool on the map and makes life here as rich, warm and entertaining as it is. This is such a vibrant project that really fulfils the missions of our Arts & Culture Fund, helping to attract visitors and provide a point of interest on the waterfront.”

Prints of the mural will be available to buy soon here.

Find more info on the Ken Dodd Charitable Foundation here.

For the latest news in Liverpool click here.

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