Made in Birmingham Exhibition: Centenary Square Show

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Centenary Square Show, Birmingham, central England, UK

23 Jun 2009

Made in Birmingham

EXHIBITION CELEBRATING BIRMINGHAM’S INDUSTRIAL HERITAGE OPENS IN CENTENARY SQUARE

MADE IN BIRMINGHAM, a free open-air exhibition presented by the Birmingham Library and Archive Services, will run until 31 August in Centenary Square, sponsored by Capita Symonds, Mecanoo Architecten, Carillion, Buro Happold and Davis Langdon, Schumann Smith, the team working on the development of the new Library of Birmingham which will open in Centenary Square in 2013.

Made in Birmingham Made in Birmingham Exhibition Birmingham Exhibition

With materials drawn from the library’s world-class collections, the exhibition is one of the events marking the bicentenary of the death of Matthew Boulton (1728-1809), the pioneering Birmingham manufacturer and industrialist. It features photographs, advertisements and other material from one of the most important public demonstrations of the city’s industrial prowess of the 19th century, The Exhibition of Local Manufactures and Natural History held at Bingley Hall, now the site of the International Convention Centre, in 1886.

Councillor Martin Mullaney, Cabinet Member for Leisure, Sport & Culture, Birmingham City Council said: “As we work towards creating the new Library of Birmingham, an iconic new centre for knowledge, learning and culture in the city, it is important to recognise and celebrate Birmingham’s pioneering industrial past and the foundations of its modern identity. We are very grateful to the Library of Birmingham design team for their support in helping to put this important exhibition together.”

David Robertson, Director, Capita Symonds, said: “Capita Symonds and its design partners are proud to be sponsoring this exciting exhibition which demonstrates the city’s rich industrial and cultural heritage: Particularly apt as work continues apace on one of the most ambitious projects in the city’s history – the new Library of Birmingham.”

Birmingham Central Library

The first public lending library in Birmingham opened in 1861. The current Birmingham Central Library, opened in 1974, is one of the busiest public libraries in Europe and is unique amongst UK public libraries for the depth and range of its collection. With over 1.5 million visitors a year and over five million items in its internationally-acclaimed archives, the City’s Library Service has now outgrown the current facilities, and needs a new building to realise its ambitions for the future development of the Service.

This year marks the bicentenary of the death of Matthew Boulton (1728 -1809), the pioneering Birmingham manufacturer and industrialist whose revolutionary ideas helped define the West Midlands region. During the 18th century, Boutlon created the Soho Manufactury, in its day the most famous factory in the world. It housed not only workshops but also showrooms, design offices, stores and workers’ accommodation. Boulton built his reputation on the manufacture of top quality jewellery, silverware and plated goods. In 1774 he went into business with the inventor James Watt and together they built and marketed Watt’s steam engines.

Boulton used modern manufacturing methods to revolutionise the production of buttons, coins and other goods. These manufacturing methods were widely adopted by businesses in the region and, by the late 19th century, Birmingham had become the powerhouse of the Industrial Revolution.

The exhibition also forms part of ‘Advantage West Midlands Celebration of imagination’, a year long event celebrating the imagination behind the innovations in evolution, revolution, transportation and much more that defined the West Midlands region.

http://www.visittheheart.co.uk/celebration/

The exhibition is accompanied by a special 24pp brochure available from Birmingham Central Library and Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery Shop.


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Birmingham Architecture

Birmingham Walking Tours : city walks by e-architect

Birmingham Architecture Designs – chronological list

Birmingham Central Library Competition

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English Architects

Birmingham Buildings

Rotunda Birmingham by Glen Howells Architects
Rotunda Birmingham
photo : Nic Gaunt

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