Innovation Birmingham appoints Beatfreeks for new digital - tech art collaboration

Innovation Birmingham has partnered with creative youth engagement agency, Beatfreeks, to deliver a new art meets tech ‘facilitator’.

The research project, funded by Arts Council England, is shaping a new initiative that will drive innovation in the region by supporting new cross-sector talent focussed and delivered at the Innovation Birmingham Campus’. The programme’s activities will create a wider community to promote innovation and at the same time expand Innovation Birmingham’s existing business support out to the digital arts community.

The new offering will also develop a ‘business engine’ to promote greater sustainability to the start-ups digital arts community whilst exploring new business avenues and bring the resulting digital arts to wider audiences.

Founded in February 2013, Beatfreeks is an award winning Birmingham-based creative youth engagement agency which develops people, ideas and spaces through creativity.  The collaboration also includes Doink, an exciting new start-up, which combines art, research and technology to collect and communicate data creatively to help people across sectors make better decisions.

This partnership will launch with an event at the Campus’ iCentrum building, entitled ‘The Art of the Possible’ on Thursday 27th October from 12.30pm. The programme will include a talk from Director of Culture Central, Gary Topp on how these plans feed into the wider ‘young, diverse and digital’ agenda in the Greater Birmingham region, as well as workshops with Birmingham Open Media. There will also be a performance from digital artist, Antonio Roberts, with singer Namiwa Jazz and talks from Birmingham Children’s Hospital on their ideas for digital input into The Big Sleuth in 2017 and a demonstration of ‘projection mapping’ from Leon Trimble.

Dr David Hardman, CEO of Innovation Birmingham, said: “Technologists can benefit from the divergent creativity of the arts and artists, as it complements the convergent approaches they take to their technology and business delivery.

“This is an exciting new project bringing together the region’s young artists and technologists as we aim to drive a significantly wider social impact with this class-leading programme. It will expand the reach of the Innovation Birmingham Campus, promoting and maximising the commercial innovation potential in the region – a true hub of creative innovation. As a first step we are turning our flagship building, iCentrum, into a digital gallery for the region’s talent on the 27th October.”

Anisa Haghdadi, Founder and CEO of Beatfreeks and Doink, said: “With support from Arts Council England, we have been mapping arts and tech nationally, understanding what artists need and want through co-design sessions, and visiting examples of best practice, we will share our learnings and findings in an attempt to add to collective knowledge in this area.

“Working with Innovation Birmingham we aim to launch our proposed plans for an art meets tech ‘facilitator’ in 2017. At the event we will discuss these plans and we look forward to working with Innovation Birmingham to further drive innovation in the region by supporting new talent.”

To attend the launch event, visit: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/the-art-of-the-possible-arts-and-tech-birmingham-tickets-28362156975

For more information on Innovation Birmingham, please visit: http://www.innovationbham.com

ENDS

For further information, please contact Sophie Taylor, PR Manager at Innovation Birmingham on 0121 250 3517. SophieT@innovationbham.com.

Notes to Editors
Wholly owned by Birmingham City Council, the Innovation Birmingham Campus is actively looking to work with and bring together the public and private sectors, creating interfaces for people with ideas, people with technologies, people with expertise and experience, and people with money, to drive collaboration, thereby promoting innovation.

The Innovation Birmingham Campus is a thriving cluster of tech companies. The Campus is home to 135 companies, with specialisms including coding, software, digital gaming and low carbon technologies. An active incubation offering in the Entrepreneurs for the Future centre, EU-funded projects and a major programme of events, visiting expert sessions and access to finance all catalyse a dynamic community that is engaged with the city. The available opportunities for start-ups and SMEs creates the best environment for growth, with over 120 ventures established in the past six years.

Medium sized enterprises and large corporates find engagement with the tech entrepreneurs and businesses based at the Campus highly beneficial as a way to infiltrate their working practices with innovative thinking to create new commercial opportunities. www.innovationbham.com