Brum Community Media; a Birmingham based art collective has responded to the restrictions of the pandemic by creating a unique virtual reality interactive gallery space, offering artists an opportunity to exhibit and art lovers an accessible creative space to enjoy.
Brum Community Media was founded in March 2020 by community radio dynamo and activist Peni Whelan and friends including Taran Singh from Taran3D who took the lead on the project.
Created as a Facebook group offering a safe space & vital information for creatives at the start of the pandemic, BCM has developed into a much-loved community arts organisation, offering hope and support for its members throughout the Covid-19 crisis.
Peni said “With the creative sector being mostly made up of freelancers and the sudden halt to our income as the pandemic unfolded, we could feel anxiety growing for many in our industry.
“The inevitable closure of arts spaces felt like the final straw for many, and we wanted to shine a light on those in need by providing support and help where possible.
“Creatives need to create and we encourage our members to use Brum Community Media as a platform to share their thoughts, ideas and advice under the message ‘Together we can… ’.
Encouraged by the valuable support and enthusiastic response received from its members BCM began to develop Hope VR Spaces.
Peni continues “When the pandemic hit and no one could go anywhere, I contacted Taran with the idea for the gallery and together we agreed to ‘take people to places that they couldn’t really go’. Ten months later and with huge effort from the Brum Community Media team, we combined our skills to turn this dream into the interactive reality that is Hope VR Spaces.”
Today, Hope VR Spaces is an awe-inspiring virtual space that offers the possibility of an accessible gallery, exhibition and event spaces limited only by the imagination. Designed as a slick walk-through and interactive experience, the space will continue to evolve with new areas, art and collections, to engage and inspire.
This unique interactive space launches on Sunday 28th March 2021 with its inaugural showcase Hope VR Spaces: Together we can… build an art gallery, which has been curated by Birmingham artist, Mark Roberts.
The showcase brings together a diverse selection of regional creatives including, amongst others, JLF (Jason Fullwood) a mixed media artist, Kathryn Sawbridge a multi-disciplinary artist with a background in photography and fine art, Elaine Mackie who will be exhibiting her digital art and Leigh Whurr, one of Birmingham’s up and coming surrealist artists.
Together we can… build an art gallery celebrates a truly diverse collection of artists from across Birmingham, the Midlands and the world.