Spectacular art installation takes flight at Liverpool Cathedral


We unveil our spectacular art installation, Peace Doves, featuring 18,000 paper doves created by renowned sculptor and artist Peter Walker.

Peace Doves is a mass participation art installation, created by renowned sculptor and artist Peter Walker. It features around 18,000 paper doves suspended on 15.5 miles of ribbon from the ceiling of the Cathedral, accompanied by a soundscape from composer David Harper.

We originally scheduled to open the artwork last May but it was postponed due to the pandemic.

However, before lockdown, visitors to the cathedral, along with local school children and community groups were invited to write messages of peace, hope and love onto thousands of paper doves.

The Dean of Liverpool, The Very Revd Dr Sue Jones, said: “I have been reading some of the prayers and messages written on the doves from people, both young and old, they are incredibly moving.

 “From people paying tribute to those they have lost to those wishing for better times and, of course, many wishing for peace.

“I hope that people will visit the installation and appreciate its beauty. I hope that people will come and stand, sit or lie under installation and look up at the doves and experience a sense of serenity and peace.

“As a cathedral, we offer this space and this installation for you to reflect on the difficult times we have all been living through and we pray it will give comfort and joy.”

Peter Walker added: “This is the first artwork to be shown since the Cathedral re-opened and it has been created by the hands of the local community.

“Thousands of children have participated in this project, writing messages of peace, hope and love onto the doves and I think that’s a really important thing to be doing at this time.”

As well as Peace Doves, you'll be able to encounter the return of the popular Angel Wings moving light projection, created by Luxmuralis.

You can take photos and videos in front of the shoulder height, angel wings that pulsate and change colour to a curated soundtrack.

Another new, interactive art installation also going on display is Peace to Ourselves. You can place a button inside the shape of a giant dove and take a moment to contemplate the past year and remember those who have lost their lives.

The installation officially opens on 21 May and will also feature as part of Liverpool’s LightNight event that evening.

You can see the installations until 31 August 2021. We’ll be running a series of special events, including talks, music, storytelling for children, yoga plus the chance to dine under the doves.

For those who might find crowds daunting, for example, someone who has an autism spectrum condition or sensory processing differences, there are some Quiet Hours.

Due to COVID regulations, please book your visit in advance to view the installation. Book your slot for May using Eventbrite.

We’ll be releasing further slots later this month keep an eye on our Visiting Us webpages for updates and our Events section full listing of all the special events.

Image of Peace Doves installation by our official photographer Gareth Jones.