Fierce 2017 opening night review

As a volunteer for Fierce 2017, I decided to make best use of the possibilities that were opened up to me by writing a few guest blogs for the event. I will be covering two events during Saturday daytime and evening, yet I went along to the opening night at the Festival Hub (Quantum Exhibition Centre on River Street in Digbeth) and this is what I saw.

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Culture Shifts: Local at the Open Eye Gallery – A Review

The exterior walls of the Open Eye Gallery are etched with the memories of those who have engaged with the space throughout its 40 year history, quotations from those who have had their work exhibited, and what it means for them and their community, and how they have been given a helping hand.

That day I was there to see the opening of the Culture Shifts: Local programme, which will be in part presented in this main hub until the 22nd of December.

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Press Release – Magician Walks Into The Future at the Coventry Biennial


Darryl Georgiou and Rebekah Tolley, in collaboration with actor and academic Jack Klaff, are presenting a new art work at the inaugural Coventry Biennial of Contemporary Art (6-22 October). “Magician Walks into the Laboratory” will be seen throughout the festival’s central exhibition, The Future, which is taking place in the historic Coventry Evening Telegraph Building, now known as The CET Building, on Corporation Street.

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Sunday Xpress presents…


Since 2006 I’ve been involved with an open mic/showcase event called the Sunday Xpress which has become a mainstay of the underground music and performing arts scene in Birmingham, and currently has its home at Centrala, based in the Minerva Works complex in what is referred to as Eastside.

Sunday Xpress does deserve a blog and a website of its own, publicity is gathered via social media, text message and word-of-mouth, but for the time being, any news will appear here, and where better than to start than the news of the extravaganza we have in store for this weekend on Sunday at 3pm start?

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Georgiou/Tolley – “The World Lived Here: L8”

I was invited by Darryl Georgiou and Rebekah Tolley to discuss their work as part of the Culture Shifts project, overseen by the Open Eye Gallery in Liverpool. Alongside photographer Andrew Jackson, and the residents of Liverpool L8, they will be exhibiting part of their findings at the Gallery on October 5th, alongside the Granby Four Streets Community Land Trust (Granby CLT), situated in Toxteth in Liverpool. The CLT itself grew out of residents’ decades long campaign to oppose demolition and re-build their community through creative community action.

Georgiou and Tolley both hope that this project, which they’ve entitled “The World Lived Here: L8” will discuss the ethics of artists working with communities on funded projects, and also discuss the differences between urban renewal , gentrification and redevelopment.

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Paradise/Palimpsest Birmingham

1 a manuscript or piece of writing material on which later writing has been superimposed on effaced earlier writing.
◦ something reused or altered but still bearing visible traces of its earlier form.”Sutton Place is a palimpsest of the taste of successive owners”

A few photos I took today whilst out and about in the City Centre.

With my back to Broad Street I headed towards New Street via Centenary Square and the Fletchers Walk Subway.

My attention was drawn towards the juxtaposition of buildings under construction superimposed on the landscape.
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Ghost/Demon Attenborough on London Midland train.

As it says. There are new stickers advertising the use of streaming Wi-Fi on London Midland trains. I was sitting behind one the other day going into the City Centre, advertising the fact that you could stream a new programme by Attenborough on your device. Usually I use the stop between University and Five Ways to gawp out the window at the allotments, the private school grandeur of Hallfield Preparatory and the canal towpath. Not that day, as the sticky side of the poster blurred my vision of the natural beauty. And to top it off, a reverse demon/ghost of Attenborough in shadow was constantly staring at me, its eyes glowing red and yellow and on fire.  Looking for all like Blake, the risen from the sea hook-handed pirate out of John Carpenter’s The Fog.

It was, as they say, quite a trip. Thanks.