1. The Factory

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    Vivid Projects is delighted to present an exhibition of recent work by artist Adam Lewis Jacob. 

    Using the decommissioned industrial apparatus of the former factory in which Vivid Projects in situated, Lewis Jacob reanimates the architectural space in dialogue with the rich archival sources explored in his video works, People Meeting In A Room (2019) and  Idrish (ইদ্রিস, 2021). Both video works were developed through research focused on the TURC Video archive, part of the Birmingham Trade Union Resource Centre and an antecedent of Vivid Projects.

    Across three years immersion in the archive, Lewis Jacob has considered the form and function, motifs and symbology of distributed, grassroots media campaigns of the trade union movement. His research is closely informed by the activism undertaken by workers and campaigners at Birmingham’s Trade Union Resource Centre, ‘TURC’, who facilitated access to media for public education and awareness.

    The two central films which will be screened throughout the exhibition reflect on the  joint struggles between anti-racist and trade union movements in the 1980’s and draw on campaigns documented by the Birmingham Trade Union Research Council’s video filming and distribution initiative, TURC Video.

    Stylistically, Idrish (ইদ্রিস)  filmed in Birmingham and Bangladesh in 2020 draws from the rich archival sources explored in Lewis Jacob’s earlier work, People Meeting In A Room. In both works, Lewis Jacob deploys a range of visual strategies from animation, to archive film, stills and evocative original sound design by Claude Nouk. Nouk’s audio strategies mirror Lewis Jacob’s visual approach – reusing, remoulding and remixing archival sounds, using rapid montages to reanimate archival narratives with a new urgency. The motifs and graphic elements – in notably, satirical cartoonist Steve Bell’s penguin characters, reimagined by animator Jason Kerley – spill out from the projection room an occupy other spaces.

    Working with the recent industrial context of the site, using motifs of repetition, labour and community, Lewis Jacob’s exhibition thus creates a context for engagement with the complex histories of the site and it’s histories. Images, campaign flyers and texts found in the archive are reimagined.   By bringing the past into the present the exhibition collapses time, policies and images echo throughout the space, reflecting the changes the local area has undergone in the  shift from manufacturing to entertainment, factory to cafe culture.


    The Factory launches 6-8pm on 4th November as part of Digbeth First Friday.

  2. Video Killed The Radio Star?

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    What is the place of music video now?

    Join us for screenings from HOME TAPING and VIDEO KILLED THE RADIO STAR introduced by Yasmeen Baig-Clifford, Director of Vivid Projects followed by a panel discussion with Justin Smith (Fifty Years of British Music Video 1965-2015) and award winning film and music video director Richard Heslop.

    Venue: P350 Parkside Lecture Theatre, The Parkside Building, Birmingham City University, Cardigan St, Birmingham B4 7RJ.

    Free event, booking recommended at

    Launched with a remit to support ‘minority programming’ Channel 4 started broadcasting in 1982 with a platform for marginalised and controversial content. In 1986 The Chart Show emerged, heavily influenced by the video formats of MTV and unique at the time for replacing presenters with a computer-generated information display. Music video production moved on from an experimental visual music aesthetic to a more commercial footing.

    With music video forming an increasingly important part of historical studies of the 80s, what is the context for music video now?

    Justin Smith and Richard Heslop will discuss these issues and more in a post-screening discussion chaired by Professor Paul Long, Director, Birmingham Centre for Media and Cultural Research.

    Justin Smith is Professor of Media Industries, University of Portsmouth and Principal Investigator on the Arts and Humanities Research Council-funded project ‘Fifty Years of British Music Video, 1965-2015’ in collaboration with Dr Emily Caston, London College of Communication (UAL).

    Richard Heslop is an established director of music videos and films, directing videos for artists including The Cure, Happy Mondays, The Smith, Sinead O’ Connor, Pop Will Eat Itself and New Order, as well as programmes on Channel 4 and the BBC. Selected early films are screening at Vivid Projects 6-21 May.

    The event is presented in collaboration with the Birmingham City University, Parkside gallery exhibition ‘Is There Anybody Out There? Documenting Birmingham’s Alternative Music Scene 1986-1990’.




    As we complete a thought provoking 2013/14 season, our activities turn to archiving.

    Our biggest project this year has been LOOKING OUT FROM THE CCCS, developed as part  of CCCS50, a University of Birmingham project.

    With a month of salons and debates ranging from pop music to radical feminism,  memories shared and new encounters between generations of cultural activists created,  it’s time to reflect. What do we take from the 50th anniversary of the Centre for Contemporary Culture Studies? If we step away from nostalgia, what are the lasting impacts for Birmingham and for culture?

    The Vivid Projects exhibition was  dedicated to Michael Green, a key member of the CCCS and Board member of VIVID 1996-2003. Mindful of the past, we turn to the evolving archive and begin the conversation with our many contributors on how we take this forward. Contact us on if you have thoughts to share.

    #CCCS50. Unfinished business.