Balsall Heath academy of contemporary art

Last year Balsall Heath was home to the Balsall Heath Biennale. Well, it would have been stupid to have it anywhere else.

The project was run by artists Elizabeth Rowe and Chris Poolman and aimed to explore local culture, art and community. As part of the project they ran the Balsall Heath Academy of Contemporary Art involving people from the local area. After a gruelling application and interview process (it involved drinking a cup of tea…I don’t really want to talk about it) I was given a place at the academy.

During the academy I screen-printed a t-shirt (white on yellow and printed side on – I’m so out there, yeah?), learnt about DaDa-ism (it’s interesting/cool/weird/pretentious – like all the best art, made trainers out of rubbish, got some henna done and had a radical felting lesson from slightly insane artist Rafal Zar. You can see my epic creation here:

Mercat cyclops

What? It’s a Cyclops mercat, obviously. Philistines. All the best artists were misunderstood, so that basically makes me Picasso. A lazy, crap Picasso with no talent, but the point still stands.

Some of the other people in the academy had actual talent so it was an interesting, and some actual things that are art were created. Not by me. I was just there for the power point. It was an interesting experience and I got to have a go at some new techniques and speak to people who actually understand art.

Apart from a aborted BTEC in art and design and a week long course in fashion illustration, I don’t know much about art, other than I like looking at attractive, interesting and challenging things.

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