HiVis 2023 celebrating 50 years of HipHop, The Paintwork's, Digbeth.

The Printworks on Fazeley street was the venue for this year’s High Vis festival.  The event celebrated 50 years of HipHop bringing together Birmingham’s street artists and dancers.  I went along on the Saturday afternoon and many of the street artists were nearing the completion of their street art.  Printworks is on the other side of the railway bridge to HS2 and several artists were working underneath the bridge at the junction of New Canal street and Fazeley street.  Security personnel from HS2 were present and a little bemused by what was taking place.  The festival people were friendly and in good form chatting about the artwork and catching up with friends, some of whom were heading off to Birmingham City’s first home match of the season.  The street outside the Printworks was traffic free thanks to the HS2 works although many of the signs were caught up in paint spray.  

Street Art by Sioux_UK
Street Art by Tempo33
Street Caravan for the Festival.
Checking out the art work. (*)
The streetart style of Titlegrafitti
Pink is this year’s colour. (*)
Street Art tools
Street conversations in colour.

As with any street art, the colours are vibrant and the artwork eye catching.  Inside the yard there was a large grinning face of Tempo33 looking down on the street art.  Centre place was a caravan that was getting the Spray-paint treatment.  The walls inside the yard were taken up with different artwork.  Inside the building there was constant supply of HipHop music with dancers displaying their different skills.  If there are any credits missing then please let me know via my socials. I have added (*) where I am unsure of artists.

Amazing dance moves.
High kicks
The end of a battle.
High Vis logo

All this activity was excellent for photography purposes and my Fujifilm x100v was put to good use.  Outside the camera was on aperture priority with the colour balance set at daylight.  For the hip hop dancing, I went for high ISO, f/5.6 and shutter speed 1/500.  The dancers were fun to capture, with the freeze frame pictures. Their expressions tell so many stories.  

Wall painting. (*)
Tempo33 in the yard.
The Printworks
Inside the Yard
Hi Vis Festival 50 years

This is my third documentation of the High Vis festival and I have included my blogs from the last two for further reading. Take a look at the two films made for the BBC by John Bray.
Birmingham High-Vis Festival returns to celebrate street culture
Street artists bring vibrant colours to Birmingham

Eastside and Digbeth, July 2023.

I enjoy a photographic walk with my Fujifilm x100v camera around the streets of Birmingham.  The early hours are best when few people are around and about.  This series of photographs begins at Eastside where the HS2 works are taking place.  Digbeth was next and I returned to Birmingham along the canal exiting again near to the HS2 works.  

Eastside and Digbeth, July 2023.
Digging holes and barriers around HS2

What is there to tell you about my walk?  No surprises, as building in Birmingham has not finished and HS2 is still digging and putting up barriers.  I took a few pictures and was interested to see BBC midlands covering the HS2 disruption in the evening news.  Why is HS2 taking so long and why is there so much disruption?  I do get upset with the blasé way they are undertaking the HS2 works.  I am sure it will look wonderful when finished but is it worth the upheaval and time taken.    
The latest BBC item puts HS2 under the spotlight.

Eastside and Digbeth, July 2023.
Curson street station awaits a HS2 upgrade.
Eastside and Digbeth, July 2023.
The empty Woodman pub awaits customers but when will they return?

Digbeth was quiet for a Monday morning and since the pandemic there is less footfall during business hours. The nightlife is always busy but there is a definite change in activity during the day.  My next observation is the encroachment of high rise living around Digbeth and the loss of character with the demolition and neglect of buildings.  

Eastside and Digbeth, July 2023.
Micheal Jackson on a furniture shop door.

There are several brownfield sites around the area that will become large skyscrapers.  Other signs of change include the former Typhoo tea building which is starting to see activity around the relocation of the BBC to the building.  Change may not always be positive and one of my pictures is outside what was the DigBrew entrance.  Sadly this excellent brewery has ceased trading and artwork from the street artist Tempo33 marks the spot.
Don’t go there.
Eastside and Digbeth, July 2023.
The former Typhoo building soon to become the BBC Midlands Headquaters.
Don’t park here.

There is much chaotic colour around the streets of Digbeth and the morning sun brings out the light and shadows.  The canalside is another area in Digbeth that is changing with several buildings undergoing renovation.  How this change will progress will be interesting to document in future months. 

Eastside and Digbeth, July 2023.
I’m late for an important date. (street art Tempo33)
Eastside and Digbeth, July 2023.
Colours stuck to a wall in Digbeth.
Eastside and Digbeth, July 2023.
Cryola’s wonderful street art is still attracting attention.
Eastside and Digbeth, July 2023.
Standing in Liverpool Street looking up Fazeley Street.
Eastside and Digbeth, July 2023.
Birmingham Canal Navigation through Digbeth
Eastside and Digbeth, July 2023.
The details under the Great Barr Street bridge.
Eastside and Digbeth, July 2023.
The Fox mural by Annatomix still impresses
Eastside and Digbeth, July 2023.
View of the canal buildings with Birmingham in the background.

My final picture was taken on my iPhone as I went past the Selfridges building.  I went low and framed the iconic discs in the background.  I was in luck as a woman walked past although she was confused by what I was doing.  The picture turned out well but was also a reminder not to attract undue attention during my street photography.

Eastside and Digbeth, July 2023.
The Selfridges Crossing.

Returning to the HS2 theme then there are more stories about the construction on my blog.  I have been documenting 16 acre wood and the damage caused by HS2 around Balsall Common since 2020.  Here is my account of this part of the HS2.

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