Art on the meter in Birmingham

By on 08/06/2010 in Culture, News

Pay and display will take on a whole new meaning in Birmingham next week as five city centre parking spaces are transformed into temporary art exhibitions.

Showcasing artistic talent from across the city, ROAD WORKS will see five on-street car-parking bays converted into cultural spaces, for one day only.

The ROAD WORKS project on Monday June 14, which comes just 48 hours before Birmingham's final pitch to be the UK's first ever City of Culture, is the city's contribution to worldwide art project International  PARK(ing) Day.

Each of the spaces will have a different theme (see details below) and organisers believe the project will showcase Birmingham's wealth of artistic and creative talent.

Chairman of the Birmingham Cultural Partnership Cllr Martin Mullaney said: “Throughout the UK City of Culture bidding process I've been struck by the extraordinary levels of creativity across the city.

“Birmingham is a great place to live and work for artists and the grassroots talent out there is phenomenal.

“International PARK(ing) Day is an exciting worldwide initiative and the ROAD WORKS project will not only allow us to showcase our creative community, it will put a smile on people's faces by offering an unexpected cultural experience.”

Launched in 2005, International PARK(ing) Day is now a global event where citizens and artists successfully collaborate to transform parking spaces into temporary 'public cultural spaces'.

It now involves 140 cities, such as Brisbane, Vancouver, Rome, Krakow, Barcelona, Brighton, Rio de Janeiro, Austin Texas.

Birmingham's five spaces will showcase a range of activities that appeal to different audiences, such as engagement activities, art installations, public spectacle or leisure spaces.

Located in close proximity to Victoria Square, St Phillips Cathedral (Colmore Row) and Waterloo Street the ROADWORKS will feature:

  • 'Not My Type' by Fluid Design and collective illustrators
    Three easels will be set up and some of Birmingham's best graphic designers will be demonstrating their skills, illustrating letters forms and numbers, as the public look on. 
  • 'Camera Obscura ' by Arlene Burnett
    This will be a 'walk in camera' in a light proof garden shed, projecting an image of some of Birmingham's impressive civic buildings onto its inside surfaces.
  • 'The Incidental Estate' by Trevor Pitt
    A domestic, suburban garden transplanted into the city centre. A space to sit in, enjoy the flowers and consider the sense of freedom it can give you.
  • Human, All too Human' by Nat Pitt
    This is a bird spotters hide, fitted with periscopes for members of the public to view animal characters who will be appearing nearby, you may spot an owl with a pushchair, a cat traffic warden or a badger with a briefcase.
  • ‘Digger's Revival' by Uddin and Elsey
    This artist's duo will create a growing environment, inspired by Van Gogh's painting of the 'Potato Planters', with wooden pallets, grow bags and plants. They will invite the public to take away seeds and encourage them to grow their own vegetables.


For further information contact Geoff Coleman on 0121 303 3501

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