Moseley Road Baths is inviting people from Balsall Heath and Birmingham to explore, share and connect at our Exchange Festival.
Exchange Festival is a free 2-day event taking place on Saturday, November 4th, and Sunday, November 5th, at the Moseley Community Hub in The School of Art, Balsall Heath, Birmingham. This festival is set to explore the potential of Balsall Heath Library upon its reopening in 2025 and the connection between the library and our historic building.
Throughout the year, Moseley Road Baths has been working closely with local and regional artists, facilitators, and practitioners to develop programme with a community led approach. The Exchange Festival’s steering group, deeply rooted in the Balsall Heath community, has played a crucial role in shaping, and curating the festival’s activities.
The festival provides a platform for open dialogues with our audiences, encouraging mutual idea sharing. It not only inspires residents to reimagine, connect, and actively participate but also ensures their inclusion in shaping the future of their beloved community library.
Exchange Festival is part of the Diving In project, made possible through the National Lottery Heritage Fund. This project has given Moseley Road Baths the creative space to explore how both the Balsall Heath Library and Moseley Road Baths can continue to serve the needs of local people. Notable milestones achieved since the project’s launch include:
Highlights of the Exchange Festival Programming so far include:
Print and Matter Workshops: 5 artists have conducted research and have engaged with Balsall Heath Library users, staff and local community to inform participatory workshops and discussions inspired by the Urdu collection in the library.
Presented by OOMK with support from Amal, these workshops explore contemporary community publishing. They bring together artists, designers, writers, and residents, offering workshops on Risograph printing and design education.
‘Request Line’ by True Form Projects: The first short film which describes the timeline of heritage work being done by True Form Projects. It documents how a record collection was rescued to create a new archive when Oriental Star Agencies, one of the oldest South Asian music stores and labels in the UK, had to close at its original address in Balsall Heath, Birmingham, 2017.
Zimmers of Southall 1 and 2: Directed by Hark1karan and produced by Alex Donaldson, this documentary delves into the lives of Punjabi West London’s BMW classic car collectors and their love for dub reggae music. The film has received acclaim at prestigious venues and earned a place at the Venice Biennale 2023.
Haseebah Ali: An artist and printmaker based in Birmingham, is creating an interactive sculpture inspired by the history of weddings in the local area. Haseebah’s work centres on cultural and occasionally political themes. Her artistic aim is to educate and inspire viewers.
Amal Creative Bookmark Making Workshop: Amal is a group that supports local women who wish to form connections, improve their Arabic, improve their English, and build friendships.
As well as felt bookmark making, Amal will bring products to buy and will have a Henna artist for participants.
Exchange Festival is part of the Diving In Programme funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund