Redhawk Logistica was among ten artists who took part in an experimental process at the Meter Room (Coventry) in Nov/Dec 2012. The experience stretched over three weeks with a series of sessions in the project space attended by all of the artists who were part of the Vinyl Group Residency. We had been asked to handover a piece of our work that we were prepared to donate to the project for someone to modify and leave behind in the space afterwards; a disconcerting prospect.
#ExpressYourself is a series of five newly created posters, blasted up in multiples on walls around BASS Festival venues, creating amazing repeated patterns with hidden meanings. Looking at first glance like a fly-poster campaign for soul bands touring to Birmingham, the set of posters which feature original artwork by designer mmsix, are actually showcasing a series of evocative soul song titles. Disassociated from their original context, the song titles stand alone, inviting audiences to project their own meanings onto them.
SWINDLE is a new piece of self initiated work for 2012 that is brought to life by its context and through interaction with people. Visitors were invited to have their photos taken on Worcester’s Fourth Plinth along with the word SWINDLE. They were able to rearrange the letters to create any other word they wanted or could just choose a particular letter to be pictured with. The rest of the letters had to remain on the plinth at all times and the person or people who re-arranged them would also place themselves on the plinth for a photo
Exploded Bus Station by Redhawk Logistica and (h)edge kelektiv was the result of a collaboration that grew out of one of Rednile’s Factory Nights at Stoke-on-Trent Bus Station. We enjoyed the visual language to be found in the marks and traces left over the years in the surfaces that make up the old bus station and were fascinated by its proximity to the new bus station, being built directly across the road. We asked ourselves what would happen if somehow the two buildings merged in a dramatic event.
48SHEET transformed Birmingham into a urban gallery by using 100 billboards across the city to exhibit large scale art works by regional, national and international artists (the name 48SHEET refers to the format of a traditional billboard). Amongst the artists and agencies who presented work, Raqs Media Collective from Delhi, MadeIn Company from Shanghai and Tidal Grace from Vancouver, was Birmingham’s own urban media outfit Redhawk Logistica with ‘Whatever youre doing now, dont’ and ‘These bad days must end’.
The project showed small change can be powerful, especially when faced with big change that is out of your control. It visually linked together all of the people who took part. The simple concept of offering to paint someone’s doors turned out to be far more complex. The project wasn’t really about painting doors; it was at heart a social engagement project that involved a proposition about connectedness. A choice about standing out or blending in. It showed that art can cross boundaries and can open up a zone of possibilities
Curving elegantly through a maze of industrial units in Digbeth is a massive blue brick railway viaduct, built 165 years ago but never actually put to use, it now stands as an abandoned monument to Victorian engineering. Redhawk Logistica was invited to contribute our specialist knowledge around creativity and place-making to Birmingham City University’s Urban Design MA in Spring 2011 and the focus was the magnificent 400 metre long Duddeston Viaduct in Birmingham.
One of the overall concerns of the United Colours of Benny’s Town is the power of the individual to make a difference in wider society. A person’s front door is clearly part of their property and yet at the same time it also exists in the shared public space of the street and is visible to all. When someone chooses to take part in the project they are at the same time improving the ‘visual amenity’ of the neighbourhood and when a number of people in close proximity join in you really begin to see the collective difference made by each incremental act.
We are surrounded by countless messages every day of our lives. Increasingly the mainstream marketing machines are taking on aspirational language. A surprisingly low-tech phenomenon we are seeing more of is a modern twist on the Victorian sandwich board man; the ‘placard person’. Exploiting the right to roam in public spaces carrying something with writing on it, they both infiltrate and contribute to the corporate dominated arena with a low-tech, but effective, form of communication.
A new exploration into legitimate play in public spaces on Soho Rd with MA students from Birmingham City University. Redhawk Logistica worked with a group of students over seven sessions to attempt to develop a relationship with this busy high street by using different methods of physically engaging with it. This process led to several themes and areas of interest emerging, before being crystallized as particular lines of enquiry, which were then tested by each group, leading to public space interventions.
Featuring new work by Redhawk Logistica, this exhibition puts contemporary artists and designers in the context of protest posters covering 25 years. Protest; Fight the Power started as part of Punch Record’s BASS festival in 2010 in a pop-up space in the Custard Factory’s refurbished Devonshire House (aka Zellig). As well as gems from the British Council’s collection of international political posters, Scholars and Warriors have been remixing it with more recent crowd-sourced proganda posters.