‘Grand Gestures: The Temporary Spectacle in Public Art’ by Lewis Biggs & Clive Gilman

Lewis Biggs: Chief Executive of the Liverpool Biennial

Before becoming the Chief Executive of Liverpool Biennial, Lewis Biggs was the director of Tate Liverpool for ten years – working on shows such as the 1998 ‘Art Trans-Pennine’, the huge exhibition set astride the 150-mile corridor between Liverpool and Hull. It gave him the taste for larger scale projects, including work outside of museums and galleries, and convinced him that it is in such places that you can often reach a different kind of public and make another kind of art.

An absolutely critical component in the city’s successful 2008 Capital of Culture bid, Lewis Biggs, believes that Liverpool Biennial gives a much needed “adrenalin boost to the bloodstream of the city – one dose every two years” – whilst bringing to Liverpool the very best in contemporary art from across the world, as part of the UK’s largest visual art event. The declared mission statement of the Biennial is: “to establish and maintain a world class contemporary visual art event in Liverpool that celebrates and encourages excellence, risk, creativity, diversity, participation and debate through partnership, profile building, development of art infrastructure, quality access and education”.

Clive Gilman: Artist & Associate Director of FACT

The artist Clive Gillman primarily works within the area of new and emerging media. He has produced works using computers and on video, in sound and using photography, also involving physical public art projects – including large-scale projections for the Liverpool Millennium waterfront celebrations as well as working on the technical management of a whole series of temporary large scale public art projects as part of Photo98. He is active in the development of artists’ access to technological resources, having set up MITES (the national arts technology resource) in Liverpool in 1992. He continues to work with them as well as working on a range of research and design projects. He was the lead artist involved in the design and development of the recently completed FACT (Foundation for Art & Creative Technology) Centre in Liverpool – where he is currently also Associate Director.

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