How to do justice to one of the best audio-visual performances of the year? With a twenty second pixellated video shot on your mobile phone of course.
Came across this doing some research this morning. Very funny.
This Tea House, intended as a place of contemplation, is part of the Festival of Xtreme Building in Birmingham. I've been meaning to visit it for a couple of months now but came across it by chance while attending Artfest. The festival is sited on waste ground in the city centre and looks at sustainable architecture. The installations are great, including one of those Micro Compact Homes which seem like a gimmick but actually looked to work really well.
Went to see this spectacular public art performance behind Birmingham's disused Curzon Street Station on Saturday night. The free show was superb, up there with Tate Liverpool's Chinese exhibition fireworks as the best show of the year so far. We arrived to find a row of twenty or so burning furnaces, each one heating a barrel of water, providing steam.
We were kept behind barriers thirty foot back. Behind the furnaces runs one of the main train lines out of Birmingham New Street, Virgin's high-speed Pendolinos and an assortment of crappier trains running past regularly.
Black and white projections of steam trains lit up the full wall of the listed Curzon Street Station building, showers of fireworks occasionally raining down from it. A massive hot pipe organ shook the ground with its impersonation of a steam train gathering momentum. Completely overwhelming. Whistles rang out from the barrels over the furnaces. The pipe organ fired horizontal fireworks at the station building; the station building fired them back. Hundreds of helium balloons carrying hundreds of lights were released into the sky creating an man-made starlit sky. A huge blast of flames brought the show to the end.
Fantastic public art, combining spectacle with a real history - the station, the Lunar Society and Birmingham's pivotal role in the industrial revolution.