Monthly Archives: June 2008

Some pics of The Public

When Fused attended the Press Preview of The Public on Tuesday we took some snapshots and here they are.

The neon lighting around the building and the bright yellow toilet entrance.

Datafall – one of the permanent pieces of work that reacts to your tag.

Andrew Chetty shows off ‘Flower of my Secret’.

Esther Shalev-Gerz’s work.

The interactive introduction to the space where you answer questions and have your picture taken – the information is then ‘flown’ around the gallery and appears on other peices of work. Very clever stuff indeed!

The Trees which appear all around the space.

The curvy windows from the inside.

A View of West Bromwich.


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Win VIP tickets to the NOKIA Skate Almighty Launch!!!

The Nokia Skate Almighty event just got better..

Nokia have 5 pairs of tickets to give away to the VIP Launch of Nokia Skate Almighty on the 10th July on London’s South Bank.

So for your chance to skate with the stars and see some of the UK’s hottest music go to for more information.
see you there?!

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Johnny Cash: A Defintive Portrayal

It will be five years since the legendary Johnny Cash ‘s death soon, so to celebrate the country stars life, Proud Central in London will be putting on an exhibition  of images that will look back at the man as well as the icon.

They will be showing some amazing images from Dan the late Wiener, Paul Natkin , Andy Earl, the late Marvin Koner.

“Sine Johnny Cash is a man so well documented we are really aiming at bringing a full retrospective, from the view of more than one lens, to create a good portrait of who he was and of the stages of his life…

The Exhibition will run from the 25th July until the 14th September. For further information go to

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A preview of The Public

Fused were invited to the press preview of The Public this morning so we went for a mooch around to take a look.

Driving up to the building from the main road in to West Bromwich (coming from Birmingham) makes for an impressive view. The building stands proud amongst the rest of the regeneration happening around the town. Inside the building’s pink touches from the outside take presidence – pink walls and neon lighting are all around the building.

Although it may not seem obvious at first art is all around. When you go in to the Public Gallery you are presented with a tag which you carry around with you. The tag holds information about you and as you carry on through the building pieces of work begin to react with you.
The abstract steel trees are placed around the gallery and have been created by Ben Kelly who built his reputation as the designer behind Manchester’s Hacienda and Factory Records HQ. The trees (pictured below)  hold information and orientation of the buidling but also ask you questions: What is your favourite colour; Choose a face you like; Have your picture taken, etc. All of this information gets ‘flown’ around the building and pops up on different pieces of work.

Not only does the work interact with you the visitor but a majority of it has also had significant input from the people living in and around Sandwell. The first exhibition on display is by Paris based artist Esther Shalev-Gerz whose piece ‘Les Portaits des Histories’ asks local residents – ‘What Story Must Be Told Today?’. The work stretches over 2 spaces – one that includes the questions answered by people from all over the world and one by the local residents.

The temporary exhibition programme will change every 8-10 weeks with no ‘dark’ periods to worry about. Curator Jason E. Bowman wants to make sure that there is a flowing and continuous programme so that visitors never miss out.

Other works around the Public Gallery include an animation project where visitors take images and make an instant animation – this was developed with a local school. As were the images of faces used in Blast Theory’s ‘Flypad’ one of the biggest peices in the gallery.

Flypad creates a 3D avatar using the images and faces visitors picked out early on in their visit. By standing on a moveable pad you get to fly in space, move and interact with your fellow visitors – swapping bodies and playing games.

Technology is very much at the fore of this space and another peice ‘Datafall’ – which resembles an electronic waterfall – also reacts to people in similar ways, changing colour as they approach. ‘Flower of my Secret’ by Usman Haque is another peice that lets you tell secrets in to ‘flower beds’ and once its gauged your mood it presents you with an electronic flower – unique to you.

The pieces are truly innovative and are going to be a lot of fun to play around with and at the end of your visit you can buy a peice of your own work – a badge, a CD Rom with editing software, a tee shirt – all with your own work made from your visit and interaction with the pieces.

This weekend sees the gallery open for free which would be an excellent opportunity to get around and take a look. Click here to see our pick of what is going on.

We will be updating with more information on the individual pieces, how they work and the artists behind them soon.

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Student Catwalk

Last week fashion students at Birmingham City University showcased their last 3 years of hard work with a catwalk show of their graduate collections.

Part of the New Generation Arts event the show took place at Think Tank Millennium Point, as usual, Fused went along to the VIP evening event to pick out our favourite designers from the year. The standard was excellent so we were hard pushed to decide which was our favourites but here are a couple below:

Outi Vitalahde kicked off the show with women’s wear in a mix of subtle tones in greys, blues and creams infusing delicate layered materials with chunky knits.

Priya Patel also used knits but included them as leggings and arm cuffs. Silks were brought to life with bulbous knitted necklaces and ear warming hats.

Hannah Kille’s strong collection mixed a lush variety of deep reds and greens with florals and tweeds which were layered with nice touches of socks with suspenders, scarfs and wastecoats.

Other that deserve a mention include:

Nellie Hamid’s Sharp tailored coats and cloaks.

Fay Yate’s stong coloured collection using blue, mustard and red.

Zoe King’s sexy geographer look of leather pacthed trousers, tweed jackets complimented with sheer shirts and dresses.

Adam Francis’s menswear collection (the only one) of distinctive tailored coats, oversized jackets and expertly pleated trousers.

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New Screen at the Electric

The UK’s oldest working cinema is due to open its second screen on the 4th July after six months of careful restoration, costing over £100,000.

Fans of the Electric will already be aware of its unique charms and the 78 seat second screen is no exception.

There are still the famous black sofa seats, with waiter service if you fancy a tipple and gourmet treat. Despite the vintage surroundings there’s nothing old fashioned about THE film-going experience – there’s a state-of-the-art digital projector, for a brighter, crisper and more stable picture. The move to digital also means there will be a much more diverse range of content from classic films to the latest intelligent mainstream releases. There’ll even be special screenings such as live opera, big sporting events and pop concerts!

Owner Tom Lawes says the hard work has been worth it “When I bought the Electric in 2004 it was desperately in need of restoration. My first priority was to get the main screen up and running again, and to create a fantastic new film-going experience. In the last 12 months we’ve been selling out regularly and I wanted to give film-goers in the region a greater choice of films. This the final stage in the Electric’s renovation and I cannot wait for the public to see this historic building in all its glory”

The Screen opens on the weekend of the 4th of July showing Oscar Nominated Mongol, Blade Runner Final Cut and Wizard of Oz in High Definition Digital Cinema.

See the website for times and ticket booking

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Read Issue 35 online

Click here to read Issue 35 online. It is the VERY first time Fused has been available to browse through in this way.

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