For the opening weekend of the 2014 Liverpool Biennial (4, 5, 6 July), Islington Mill takes over the legendary Black-E building on Liverpool’s Great George Street. During this three-day residency, a collection of artists and performers associated with Islington Mill will relocate to the Black-E under the broad banner #TemporaryCustodiansOf
This theme not only describes our temporary relocation, but more importantly it unites a prevailing theme in the work of many Islington Mill artists, while also suggesting a potential ongoing ethos for the Mill itself. As with the 2013 Ibiza residency, constructing a microcosm of the Mill in a new environment allows for a clearer picture of the way the Mill functions as a uniquely independent entity, beyond the confines of any particular building.
This lesson comes at a very important time, as partway through the residency the decision will be announced regarding our much-anticipated large scale Arts Council funding application, the outcome of which could represent the largest material change for Islington Mill since the building was purchased. Our #TemporaryCustodiansOf residency provides a forum to respond to and analyse our ideas surrounding this across a variety of disciplines, as well as having a whole load of music, food and good times in the process..!
The Black-E itself is a unique Liverpool institution, the first cross-purpose community and arts venue of its kind, in continuous use since the late 60s, and an ideal sister venue for Islington Mill to take on the Biennial’s broader themes of artistic education, debate and collaboration.
Events taking place at the Black-E include the next stage of Maurice Carlin’s Endless, Pageless artwork, which will be disassembled and dispersed amongst its own ‘temporary custodians’, as will components of Jen Wu’s The Wall project. We’ll be hosting a three-day long visually-projected Google hangout involving our global family of artists and other interested participants in an open discussion of art as a shared community asset, amongst other topics. There will be pot luck dinners to keep everyone fed (we’re even bringing our much-loved kitchen table from the Mill along with us), plus DJs and live collaborative music to entertain, and to wrap up the weekend, an icon of Islington Mill, the genderqueer drag explosion that is Christeene Vale (aka performance artist Paul Soileau) steers her European jaunt in the direction of the Black-E for an unscripted appearance and a no doubt invigorating audience experience.
We welcome friends old and new to participate and join us during this exciting residency. Check on our Facebook and Twitter pages to catch details of individual events, including all of the (un) usual goings on back home in Salford.