Birmingham Billboard Project

22 August 2022

Arts Council Collection has partnered with JackArts and Birmingham Museums Trust to show the work of three Birmingham-based artists to create vibrant artwork for billboards across the city. The artists were chosen by Turner-prize winning artist, Lubaina Himid CBE, and their stunning artworks draw on themes from our latest touring exhibition, Found Cities, Lost Objects: Women in the City, also curated by Himid. The three artists are Haseebah Ali, Round Lemon x Helen Grundy and Leah Hickey. 

Found Cities, Lost Objects: Women in the City is an Arts Council Collection  national touring exhibition curated by Turner Prize-winning artist and cultural activist Lubaina Himid CBE. Drawn from the rich holdings of the Arts Council Collection this exhibition considers the privileges enjoyed and boundaries faced by women in the modern city. This extensive and diverse exhibition of over 60 works presents a wide array of modern and contemporary art, including painting, sculpture, photography and film. The exhibition is currently on show at Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery’s Gas Hall until 3 September 2022.

Billboards will be live from Monday 22 August until Saturday 3 September 2022 in the following locations in Birmingham:

122 Great Barr Street

58 Stratford Road

Barford Street

Bradford Street

Old Crown Pub

The Arches


The Arts Council Collection : Birmingham Billboard Project

Leah Hickey examines themes of love, loss, and dysphoria in her work. Hickey's My Heart (2022) utilises visual material from Brian de Palma's Carrie (1976) and speaks to the artists facination with typography. "My heart is an ode to dysphoria, typified as ‘severe unhappiness, especially a person’s feelings of being very uncomfortable in their body’, associated with navigating the city."

The Arts Council Collection : Birmingham Billboard Project

Haseebah Ali's The Pink Route (2022) is a four colour reduction lino print in the style of an Islamic repeat pattern. Ali hints at the restriction of women's movement in the city at night and the choice of longer, 'safer' routes home. The complexity of the design is inspired by Islamic architecture and echoes the complexity of winding routes. "The print directly links into the rise of gender violence and mortality rate of young women of colour."

The Arts Council Collection : Birmingham Billboard Project

Helen Grundy and Round Lemon reimagine 'The River' by Dhruva Mistry (more commonly known as 'The Floozie in the Jacuzzi' by Birminghum locals), an iconic sculptural landmark in Birmingham. Surrealism, satire, and feminism collide showcasing the freedom and visibility of women in Birmingham alongside the challenges they face in Grundy and Round Lemon's And They Were Behind Us (2022). "Women from the past, present and future roam around and behind ‘The River’ in a playful and vibrant Victoria Square, celebrating the cities empowering diversity."


The Arts Council Collection is the UK's most widely seen collection of modern and contemporary art.

With more than 8,000 works by over 2,000 artists, it can be seen in exhibitions and public displays across the country and beyond. This website offers unprecedented access to the Collection, and information about each work can be found on this site.