The Archive offers a display of 40-plus years of cultural history. Who did what, why, when and to what effect. More than an absorbing archive: also a do-it-yourself kit to contribute to future cultural initiatives; covering events created by the Black-E as well as the work of visiting artists.

African Connexions - The Batiks
African Connexions was a project which explored the similarities between traditional African dances and contemporary social dances.  It led to 24 Batiks which were then exhibited. You will find a ful description of African Connexions under Dance (not yet available). The Batiks were made by Jan Green. Read More
02-12-2017 1 day 14 hours ago
African Connections - 1992 -1997 02-12-2017 1 day 16 hours ago
Merseyside Firsts - The Summer Tour-1989
Merseyside Firsts Summer Tour  The idea was an expansions from the 1986 playscheme 'Liverpool Firsts.'  In this instance the idea was to take young people on visits to places where there had been a Merseyside First and make a video illustrating  it. Read More
20-03-2018 2 days 18 hours ago
Liverpool Firsts - 1986
Intro The majority of Themed Playschemes have been written up specifically for the Archive Website. This is not the case with 'Liverpool Firsts'.  Below is a Report which was written at the time.   It is unaltered apart from the condensing of some of the statistical information which in the original runs to several pages. Read More
24-08-2016 3 days 18 hours ago
Black Dance In Britain - 23 August 1993
Left is the flye Read More
17-11-2017 1 week 3 days ago
The Education For All Show - June 1970
Education For All was the third of the Blackie's participatory theatre shows. It was commissioned jointly by St Helen's Council through its Education Department and North West Arts.  It celebrated the 100th anniversary of the 1870 Education Act. Preparations for the Show started with research - all possible participants were provided with a Reading List much of which was compulsory. ( The Reading List can be accessed by clicking here). So by the time the show was being created those working on it had a clear idea of how  governments and educationalists saw the purposes of education and  the differences within these visions. The Idea The Show would be in two parts - part one was a model of the education system.  Part two was a model of the world of work. As with all the Blackie participatory shows there was a central bureaucracy.  This welcomed people as they arrived - provided score sheets - provided certificates - ensured that participants were in the right place. In addition there were those who supervised the various processes and, as necessary,  acted as anything from social workers to a police force. How It Worked The Education System within the Show was based on people's ability to balance and the speed at which they could fulfill the tasks.   Based on the statistics of the time a system was created which mirrored how the education worked and fulfilled the practical needs of the show. Each performance had limit of 60 participants of these:-  30 people would leave the education system without gaining any qualifications 30  would go on to get try to get a 1st degree certificates  (kind of the equivalent of 'O' Levels) 22 would pass and get a 1st degree certificate. 11 would gain  qualify for a 2nd degree certificate 8 would gain a 2nd degree certificate 4 would pass to go on to the equivalent of University (1 in the 4 would 'drop out')   Left a sample of a Certificate of Excellence.  The colour of the stars varied depending on the level of the degree achieved.     Participants were tested by a series of games which ranged from the easy to very difficult. Below are some of these games in process:- Game 1 Progress along a string on the floor.  Participants were invited to hop along the string as fast as they could.    Above and right participants  hopping along a string which is calibrated.  This was the simplest game played.  Participants were scored on how far they got before losing contact with the string, time they took and style. Game 2  With board on head follow the string along a wall by touching it. You lost points if you lost contact with the string or lost your board. Game 3 There were two obstacle courses one was a course over boxes covered with cups where you had to avoid touching the cups. You lost points if you touched a cup or lost your board.   Game 5 This was an obstacle course amongst piles of books.  You had to avoid touching the books.  Below is the best photograph we have of this activity.    Game 6 Progressing along a string on the floor with a board on head and picking up cups placed alongside the string.     You lost points if you touched the floor, lost contact with the string or dropped or missed a cup.  Read More
20-09-2017 15 weeks 5 days ago
The Education For All Show - The Reading List - June 1970
Reading List for Education For All   1870 Education Act* 1944 Education Act* Half Our Future by Sir John Newsham* Read More
22-11-2017 16 weeks 4 days ago
(13) Still Crazy After All These Years - Summer/Autumn Winter '81 Spring '82 27-10-2017 17 weeks 14 hours ago
Magic In The Parks - August/Sept. 1970
Please note that unlike most parts of this archive, photos on this page do not necessarily enlarge as they are, in some cases, screen grabs from a DVD of a film and do not therefore have a level of quality which allows for succesful enlargement.   Read More
22-07-2017 18 weeks 2 days ago
Community Arts In Great Britain By Rufus Harris 01-11-2017 20 weeks 2 days ago
Why Games
Why Games  is an A5 leaflet which lays out the philosophical basis for the games. it is available to read or download here (the whole document  exists below), or if you want actual copies, they are available from the Black-E for the cost of the postage. Read More
16-10-2012 2 years 30 weeks ago
WOManweb January/February 1991
“Many minds, but one heart.” (Chelmsford Branch banner of the NUGW). All of the banners collected together for this exhibition, with the exception of the Suffrage banner, were the work of women in Merseyside and the North West. Some of them were simply made – produced quickly for a demonstration; some of them contained months and months of intricate work and patience. Read More
08-09-2012 3 years 28 weeks ago
Women's Rites - May 1995
An exhibition of paintings by Monica Sjoo and works by North West artists Rebecca Doughty,  Judy Gough,  Jean Grant,  Read More
13-08-2014 3 years 4 weeks ago
Yours For The Taking - Dec1975/Jan76
This was the Blackie's  second participatory exhibition to be held at the Walker Art Gallery. It was part of Peter Moores’ second exhibition 'Body & Soul' and took place in the last week of this exhibition. Read More
26-09-2012 3 years 24 weeks ago
Yours Naturally - Summer 1984
Overview Read More
04-07-2015 2 years 31 weeks ago
‘A Dot On The Map’ 17th September – 26th October 1997
This was the first public showing of ‘A Dot OnThe Map’ a collaborative Art and New Technology works, linking schools, communities and individuals from all over Cumbria isolated by geography or disability. These places –the Dots- included remote village schools, big Inner City schools, special schools, a youth club for the deaf and the singular house of Audrey Barker who instigated ‘A Dot On The Map’ (whoever crossed her threshold was invited to make artwork for the project). Read More
10-08-2014 3 years 32 weeks ago
‘Access Is A State Of Mind’ September/October 1997
Celebrating Access For All at the Blackie Gallery. “It’s a breath of fresh air to walk into an art gallery and experience an exhibition as this, which renews a sense of consciousness to all the senses and awakens our child like curiosity in a world where we can sometimes lose our sense of fun.”   - Patrick O’Reilly, Art Student. Read More
16-12-2012 3 years 40 weeks ago
‘ANIMALS: for the use of ...’ May/June 1989 29-05-2012 3 years 28 weeks ago
‘Food For The Eye, Or … Would You Like Your Egg Woven Or Knitted?’ November/December 1988
A sometimes serious, sometimes light-hearted look at food and eating, interpreted in textiles by artists from Merseyside and around the country. The Artists and Their Work: Su Richardson (Birmingham) Read More
08-09-2012 2 years 5 weeks ago
‘Hat Tricks’ December 1989/January 1990
‘Hat Tricks’ continued the series of theme - based textile exhibitions with a semi-serious look at hats – ranging from the fantastic to some examples of more traditional ethnic headgear. The exhibition aimed, amongst other things, to draw attention to an accessory that no longer takes the form of a customary convention. The exhibition was also seeking to entertain and to present, mostly, contemporary textile/fashion skills. Read More
27-08-2012 5 years 19 weeks ago

Here we provide various ways to view, organise and filter items and events that can be found in the Archive.

Click on "Introduction" to read about the kinds of things archived in that section of the site.

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