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KULTURA Sessions: BRUM premieres online
Via Stacey for Birmingham Museums Trust
An innovative virtual game that draws inspiration from Digbeth will showcase new Birmingham music and art across the world. Inspired by music festivals, the KULTURA Sessions: BRUM will create a must-see online event featuring a Birmingham-inspired gallery in the metaverse.
Commissioned by Birmingham Museums Trust (BMT), the KULTURA Sessions: BRUM premieres for FREE at 8pm on Tuesday 11th October 2022, in a livestream by high-profile Twitch influencers Blue and Queenie. You do not need to be a gamer or to be registered to watch through Twitch.
The KULTURA Sessions: BRUM is a collaborative project between Birmingham Museums Trust, KULTURA and West Midlands artist performers to bring together music, spoken word and art into Occupy White Walls (OWW), the massive multiplayer online video game where people build galleries and curate exhibitions with the help of ground-breaking AI (DAISY).
Thousands of players from all over the world will now experience a Digbeth-inspired world, in a loving homage as energetic and creative as Digbeth itself.
Six West Midlands performers will have their music, poetry and art beamed globally in KULTURA Sessions: BRUM – musician Ace Ambrose, moving image artist De’Anne Crooks, musician Dorcha, poet Jasmine Gardosi, new media artist Antonio Roberts and mixed-media poet Samiir Saunders.
A reimagined Digbeth is home to the KULTURA Sessions: BRUM, with a stunning cyber reinterpretation of Gibb Street and Custard Factory, littered with colourful art installations and popular works from Birmingham Museums Trust’s collections for gamers to visit and explore.
Following its Twitch premiere on 11th October, gamers across the world can then re-visit the music performances and immerse themselves in the Kultura Sessions: Birmingham through the game (OWW), available via download platform Steam.
This is a collaborative project commissioned by BMT in partnership with AI-driven art platform KULTURA and KULTURA Ex Machina, the start-up behind the OWW ‘artiverse’. This collaboration is being funded and supported by The Space, a digital agency that promotes digital engagement across the arts and cultural sector.
The new collaboration will build on BMT’s existing relationship with OWW after Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery (BMAG) became the first official museum to partner with the arts platform during the pandemic lockdown, enabling users to curate their own exhibitions in a virtual BMAG and explore a growing fantasy world of art.
For BMT, partnering with KULTURA/OWW is another way for people to engage with art and performance in the city. It also opens up data and analytics about how the public engages with BMT on a level never seen before in ‘bricks and mortar’ galleries.
Linda Spurdle, Head of Digital at Birmingham Museums, said:
We’re excited to be taking the creativity of Birmingham into the virtual world of Occupy White Walls.
We’d previously partnered with OWW to add Birmingham art collections and even a version of Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery to the game, and this project was inspired by the fact that you can now add sound to the game. We thought it would be great to have an event or festival, showcasing Birmingham artists, but what we have is even better than that, as they have created a Digbeth-inspired cityscape within the game for players all over the world to visit.
We’re pleased to that influencers Blue and Queenie will be live streaming it on Twitch for everyone to enjoy. This RandD project was funded by The Space, who do so much to help arts organisations to innovate using digital means.”
Rosa Francesca, Creative Producer and Artist, said:
I am very excited to take the creative lead on this project. Since Occupy White Walls introduced their Soundcloud integration which allows players to stream music in their galleries, I have been interested in creating some kind of music event, particularly inspired by the idea of ‘virtual music festivals’ as well as the concept of album listening parties.
I specifically reached out to local Birmingham and West Midlands musicians and spoken word artists to include their work in this project. These are artists who I consider to be an important part of Birmingham’s culture, doing innovative and progressive things in the arts and music scene and bringing fresh sounds and varied, cross-genre music. Some of the artists are using this opportunity to release previously unheard recordings which is particularly exciting.
In creating an event with such a strong focus on music and sound into a game which is already so immersive, we are hoping to inspire conversation about how visual art and music can create a richer sensory experience in MMO games. I am very grateful for Birmingham Museums Trust’s involvement with this project and hope to be part of more collaborations with BMT and Occupy White Walls in the future.”
Fiona Morris, CEO and Creative Director of The Space, said:
The Space is delighted to be supporting Birmingham Museums Trust on the KULTURA Sessions: BRUM. This exciting, immersive digital experience invites users to see and hear, music and art from an exciting range of Birmingham artists. We are sure this will provide a fantastic sense of place and ignite an interest in the city’s culture through digital means.”
Yarden Yaroshevski, founder and CEO of KULTURA Ex Machina, added:
This collaboration is a terrific example of how immersive technology and AI can help promote and discover artists who don’t normally get access to the elitist art world hegemony.
Linda at BMAG along with Rosa and The Space are breaking new ground by experimenting with cool new opportunities presented by technology. It was awesome to work with them and we hope to do even cooler stuff in the future.”
The KULTURA Sessions: Brum will be available to view at 8pm on Tuesday, 11th October, by visiting twitch.tv/blueandqueenie