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Adrian Henri and the painter-poets who turned the Mersey Beat into an art


Paintings, posters and ephemera from Liverpool at the time of the Beatles show the city’s 60s scene rivalled New York for creativity

In 1965, Liverpool was “the centre of human consciousness in the world”, according to Beat visionary Allen Ginsberg. A small exhibition at the ICA offers a nostalgic taste of that moment when Beatlemania ruled pop and the Mersey Beat poets were at the forefront of the British avant garde.

It is a display of paintings, collages, film clips and cases of posters, books and ephemera remembering artist and poet Adrian Henri, who died 15 years ago. Henri, it turns out, pioneered happenings and performance art in Britain.

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