About BLAB

Backlash Against the Bland; live, interactive, accessible discussion events in secret locations across Birmingham designed to ask the most difficult questions about the arts and the arts industry. Panel discussions are boring, but questioning what we do and why we do it is not.


We are over saturated with panel discussions which don’t feel accessible to young people: the same old speakers, the same old questions, the same old results. We want to have important conversations and make them both engaging and inspiring.

And so BLAB brings together aspiring artists and activists with people on the cutting edge of relevant fields and goes beyond the tired panel discussion format to inspire debate and foster deeper connections. It asks questions that don’t have easy answers, but impact directly on an artist’s life and work: how can creative workshops endanger participants’ mental health? Where is the line between making a living and selling out? Is telling the story of a tragedy like the fire or Grenfell a duty, or a way to build artistic capital on the suffering of others?





BLAB is a series of unconventional discussion events happening once every 2 months. To reflect the varied topics and speakers, each BLAB session is held in an undisclosed venue and structured differently. The format and the location are carefully chosen to reflect the topic, link to the work of the guests, and give the participants an experience which enriches their understanding of the subject.