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Artist's Spaces: Making Place - Artists and creative ecologies

  • 30 November 2022, 5-6pm
  • Instagram Live
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Click here to view the IGTV recording of the event.

Artists need space to make work, but access to affordable workspaces is increasingly limited. How can artists and organisations work together within local communities to overcome these challenges? And what support do they need to succeed?

Artist Faisal Hussain was joined in conversation by Grand Union Director Cheryl Jones to discuss the thriving creative community that has evolved in Digbeth, Birmingham, and the central role of artist spaces in creative placemaking.

About the speakers

Faisal Hussain is an Artist and the Founder of True Form Projects. He creates work that questions perceptions, undermines lazy stereotypes and highlights missing histories and overlooked facts. Whether in music, in a gallery or a sign outside a kebab shop, Hussain's cross-disciplinary practice is often presented in varied environments to engage with diverse audiences. Using archive and personal memory as starting points, his work explores the representation and understanding of South Asian culture and identity through the media, government, communities, and individuals.

Hussain's work has been shown in museums, galleries, universities and in public spaces in the UK and internationally including the Royal Academy, Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery and Urban Nation, Berlin. He is currently interested in collaborative working with archiving, academia and community based organisations. The organisation he founded 10 years ago, True Form Projects, was recently awarded Heritage grant over the next 3 years.

Cheryl Jones is Director and one of the founding members of Grand Union, a gallery and artist studios complex in Digbeth. Since 2009 she has successfully developed Grand Union from being run voluntarily by a collective of artists and curators, to an Arts Council England National Portfolio Organisation and Charitable Incorporated Organisation.

She is now leading the organisation through a major capital project that will transform Junction Works, a beautiful mid-nineteenth century, Grade II listed canal building in Digbeth, into a vibrant centre for the presentation and production of contemporary art.

Cheryl is also a Member of the West Midlands Combined Authority Cultural Leadership Board, an advisory board established to help WMCA build an innovative and entrepreneurial cultural sector. She has a range of experience in curating and project management and has been a key collaborator in developing initiatives such as Digbeth First Friday and Birmingham Art Map.