Adrian Henri was born in 1932 in Tranmere, Birkenhead, Cheshire. His family moved to Rhyl, North Wales, when he was four where he was educated at grammar school. He studied at King's College, Newcastle, and received a BA in Art from the University of Durham in 1955. For ten seasons from 1950 he worked at the fairground in Rhyl, and also worked as a teacher. Henri moved to Liverpool in 1957 and worked as a teacher in Bootle and a scenic advise at the Liverpool Playhouse and a college lecturer. He became interested in poetry and jazz after meeting Roger McGough and Brian Patten in 1961. In 1964 he became assistant director at Liverpool College of Art and had his first one-man exhibition in 1968 at the Institute of Contemporary Art, London.
Between 1967 and 1970, Henri was the singer/poet with Liverpool Scene, a rock/poetry group. Henri continued to paint and publish poetry, and was President of the Liverpool Academy of Arts in the late 1970's until the early 1980's. A retrospective of Henri's work was exhibited at the Walker Art Gallery in late 1999 early 2000 as a celebration of the work of one of Merseyside's most prolific poets and painters. Henri died on December 20th 2000 after having suffered a severe stroke. Liverpool city council conferred the freedom of the city on him the night before he died.