Peter Liversidge was born in the UK in 1973. For the past decade, all of his work has started with the conceptually-based practice of creating proposals for performances and artworks across a wide expanse of mediums. Liversidge types these proposals on an old manual typewriter. Complete with typographical errors and hand annotations, the proposals describe ideas from the practical to the purely hypothetical, ranging from “I propose to paint the wall that the proposals are hung on a dark grey” to “I propose to dam the Thames and flood the City of London.”
Liversidge usually creates the proposals within a self-imposed timeline that is related to a forthcoming exhibition or project; many are site-specific. The resultant exhibition includes the manifestation of some of the ideas as well as the framed proposals, both realized and unrealized. The first object produced in any series is a book collating the entire set of proposals.
He draws inspiration not just from Conceptualist artists such as On Kawara, Fischli and Weiss and Keith Arnatt, but also from artists such as Joseph Cornell and the Reverend Howard Finster, as well as inveterate tinkerers like his own grandfathers. Liversidge is driven by the generative notion of creativity and the idea that art is most successful when it exists slightly outside of formalist notions of fine art. To this end, the physical objects Liversidge produces often include banal, everyday materials that are repurposed or co-opted for his use. He believes that his work is universally accessible and in fact requires the presence of the viewer and their unique interpretation of the proposals to complete the aesthetic experience. The artist’s active engagement with each space and community for which he creates proposals is at the center of his varied and dynamic practice.
Liversidge has worked with a diverse range of institutions, including the Tate Gallery in 2008, the Centre d’art Santa Mònica (Barcelona) in 2008, Bloomberg SPACE, London 2009 and the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art in 2010. He has also developed projects for the Europalia Festival in 2007, Art Basel Miami in 2009 and Edinburgh’s sculpture park, Jupiter Artland, also in 2009.
Liversidge lives and works in London.