Birmingham Billboard Project Collection

Scope and Content

The collection consists of 12 framed prints of the posters created as part of the Birmingham Billboard Project, together with multiple copies of the publication that accompanied it, The Outing of Urban Art, Billboard Project (Birmingham) 1992-93. The posters were created by the artists listed in the names index, while Art in Ruins is an artist-run group.

Administrative / Biographical History

Graham Fagen was a member of staff at Birmingham Institute of Art and Design between 1991 and 1995. When he arrived in Birmingham in Easter 1991, he expected to find an artistic vibrancy similar to that in his hometown of Glasgow. His disappointment at not finding this the case influenced him to conduct a research project into possible ways in which to use mass communication media to encourage local people to become more interested in visual culture. He worked in collaboration with artists and Vision, an independent Birmingham-based contractor. Each artist was invited to design a billboard poster that would be displayed on advertising hoardings for one month. The choice of billboard posters as a medium allowed the works to be displayed outside the more traditional confinement of a gallery and created the opportunity for them to be viewed by a wider and more diverse public audience. Between May 1992 and May 1993 twelve billboards created by artists were exhibited in Snowhill Queensway, Birmingham. The project was also the subject of an exhibition at the Bond Gallery, Birmingham in 1993.


There are two series: one contains the prints in random order, and the other multiple copies of The Outing of Urban Art, Billboard Project (Birmingham), 1992-93.

Conditions Governing Access

Advance booking is required to see this collection. To make an appointment, please email us at or phone 0121-331-6981.


Corporate Names