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In 1976 a small group of artists rented a derelict police station and established Bridewell Studios. Art Space Merseyside was formed in 1981 as a not for profit limited company to run the organisation and after the demise of Merseyside County Council the artists secured a loan to buy the property.
Since the studios were founded hundreds of artists have worked or had connections here. Some have national and international recognition; Adrien Henri, Richard Young, Stephen Broadbent, Maurice Cockrill, Ian McKeever and Anish Kapoor. It has also had as a tenant David Gray - singer/songwriter. Even the building has been in the spotlight being a location for Alan Bleasdales 'Boys from the Blackstuff'.
The Bridewell currently has over thirty artists and craftspeople working in individual spaces. The many art forms include painting, stone/wood sculpture, jewellery, stained glass, textiles, print-making, ceramics, metal and multi-media.
It is artist-led and does not receive funding so relies on it's members to sustain the organisation.
The Bridewell Gallery in it's latest incarnation invites collaborations from other arts organisations and the local community - see Gallery page for more details.