Gala Pool Art Project

Moseley Road Baths CIO are working with the National Trust to commission a contemporary art project for the Gala Pool at Moseley Road Baths. The project is part of Trust New Art, the National Trust’s programme of contemporary arts.


We are looking for an artist(s) with experience of working in public places and with people to develop a temporary commission at Moseley Road Baths in 2019, which will make a strong impact in the space and the outside of the building and will reflect the essence of the baths as a past, present and future community space.

Image: Attilio Fiumarella, 2014

Moseley Road Baths is an extraordinary survivor. The only pre-1914 public baths to be listed and in use for public swimming today, its opulent exterior and interior are almost completely intact. The baths are situated in Balsall Heath, a vibrant, super diverse, and young part of Birmingham facing challenges of economic deprivation and health inequality. (Sustainability Appraisal of the Balsall Heath Neighbourhood Development Plan, Scoping Report, December 2012). The baths are a loved and valued community asset and have been the subject of intense local campaigning for over 10 years. A coalition of partners are working to ensure its survival and future as a thriving and financially sustainable community hub, a place to swim, and a cultural landmark of which the city is proud.

Central to the baths is the dramatic and beautiful Gala Pool. Closed since 2003, this incredible space will re-open in autumn 2019 (although not for swimming) after undergoing a major roof repair.  

The reopening of this space presents an opportunity to reignite the profile of the Baths through a commission that will make a stunning artistic impact in the space, and beyond. As one of the first public events following restoration, the National Trust and Moseley Road Baths Charitable Incorporated Organisation (CIO) would like to commission an artist to help us celebrate the Gala Pool space and its potential, to tell people that the baths are open for swimming and that they have a future; we want to encourage people to use and to support the Baths.  We want to engage with the existing swimming community and others in Balsall Heath through the project and intend to fund raise to support further engagement. We are looking for a high quality, engaging and participatory contemporary commission which will demonstrate the potential of programming contemporary art in this unique and special place.

Deadline for applications is the 31st January 2019.

A document with information about Moseley Road Baths and an Artists Brief can be downloaded below. 

First stage application is by Expression of Interest with details of your practice, and links to images of your work and why you are interested in the commission with an initial response to the brief. 2 sides of A4 max, via email to 

Commission Budget

*The budget for the artists costs of commission is £14,000.

Commission Aims

*Showcasing, sharing and celebrating the newly accessible Gala pool.
*Deepening and widening connection with the Baths and its stories.
*Sparking conversations that shape our collective understanding of the spirit of this unique place and its future.
*Raising the profile of the site and the campaign to keep it in use.
*Making a connection to the people who use and support Moseley Road Baths., and wider communities.

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