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a-n Assembly

Friday, 15 June 2018
11am – 7pm

Artist and curator Antonio Roberts programmed the second event in this years a-n Assembly. The event addressed the increasing amount of development taking place across Birmingham and the Midlands as a whole, exploring both the opportunities and the challenges this presents for the visual arts community in the region.

In 2017 Arts Council England invested £90 million in Birmingham-based National Portfolio Organisations, while the government’s multi-billion-pound investment in high-speed railway HS2, which is due to open in December 2026, will reshape the city’s landscape. Numerous artist-led galleries and commercial creative industries, including Eastside Projects, have established a presence in the Digbeth area of Birmingham in recent years, taking advantage of low rents, large spaces and close proximity to the city centre. While an ongoing redevelopment scheme for Digbeth and the wider city reflects the city’s ambition to grow and regenerate, what impact will these changes have for artist residents?

Through a mix of presentations, discussions, artist film and a specially commissioned soundwalk through Digbeth, Assembly Birmingham explored these competing tensions, reflecting on the opportunities artists have already built for themselves, and considered what investment and change could mean in the future.


Welcome and introduction to the day

11 – 11.15am

Session 1: Opportunity Cost
11.15am – 1.15pm

1.15 – 2pm

Session 2: SOUNDwalk
2 – 3pm

Coffee break
3 – 3.30pm

Session 3: Forward
3.30 – 5pm

Session 4: Paradise Lost
5 – 7pm