Birmingham Weekly Arts Roundup, January 16-22

While some of our arts venues are still nursing their New Year’s hangovers, the New Art Gallery Walsall is leaping into 2014 with real enthusiasm.  Alongside The Big No, two further new shows open this Friday (January 17).  Dead Media is a hypnotic, thought-provoking exhibition from Brum’s own Chris Clinton, rounding up for the first time his repurposed pop-culture merchandise and presenting a new structure made from VHS tape.  Meanwhile, Japanese artist Chiharu Shiota will feature two site-specific recontextualisations of commonplace objects, displayed alongside her drawings and films.

The Warwick Arts Centre’s big winter exhibition opens on Saturday (January 18).  Uncommon Ground looks back on British land art from 1966 to 1979, bringing together 24 of the most notable practitioners of the movement, in which artworks are created from the earth.  The show is preceded by a round-table discussion and opening party on Friday (January 17).


The Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery presents Mapping My Journey from Saturday (January 18).  The multimedia show looks back on 60 years of the region’s transgender community, rounding up the broad range of personal experiences of its participants.

MAPPING MY JOURNEYAlso opening this week, the Herbert has 2014’s Coventry Arts Consortium from Saturday (January 18), the 12th annual celebration of the work of local artists, while from Monday (January 20), the Royal Birmingham Society of Artists has Melting Pot, showcasing multicultural Britain through craft.

This Sunday (January 19), it’s the first Sunday Film Club of the year at the Library of Birmingham.  This month, Flatpack present Hugo, Martin Scorsese’s enchanting adventure film, in which an orphan boy discovers the films of Georges Méliès.  To build up to the screening, the venue has been running Méliès’ short film A Trip To The Moon in the Children’s Library.

For theatre fans, this week’s highlight opens at the Rep on Thursday (January 16), with Joe White’s Pride & Joy exploring parental strife.  Elsewhere, the Warwick Arts Centre present The Improv Musical 2014 on Saturday (January 18), in which the company produce a full-blown musical based on the audience’s suggestions, while on Wednesday (January 22), it’s all eyes on the Mac for Spark Night!, a showcase for Birmingham Uni’s third-year Drama students.


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