The artistic process of creating a site-specific live art intervention for a public art exhibition. Notes from the invitation to the performance.


I spent most of the day onsite today, I brought information for the collaborators, cleaning products and a camera. I wore a luminous jacket in hope of looking more like a member of the council whilst cleaning the phone box, but I think most people thought I was doing a stint of community service. One fellow city centre cleaner also wearing a luminous jacket gave me a knowing nod and I felt instantly accepted and legalised in my role of phone box cleaner.

I met with two of the four creative individuals who have accepted the invitation to collaborate in Forum Kiosk and we discussed the endless possibilities there are in how to respond creatively to the project. They were both really positive and excited about the project, which gave me a big boost. I also met the artist Ann Walker who will be transforming the phone box next to mine into a pinhole camera for the 2.5 Hour intervention.

It feels great to be working in collaboration with other creative practitioners and it's been a real buzz to spark off each other's work and ideas…

I'm feeling excited and nervous as I finish off all last minute preparations for the 2.5 Hour performance and intervention tomorrow.


Forum Kiosk -invitation to participate

Forum Kiosk

19 March 2009 11.30am – 2.00pm

Victoria Square Phone Box Birmingham

+44 (0) 121 643 0154

Forum Kiosk is part of the public art project 2.5 Hours of Oxygen; a series of artistic interventions exploring the private space of the phone box in a time of ubiquitous communication.

Forum Kiosk is inspired by Internet forums and online blogs, artist Rebecca Gamble and fellow performers will act as operators of a phone box in Birmingham for 2.5 hours to transform this charming yet archaic communication space into a lively physical forum of messages and photographs.

You are invited to participate by calling Forum Kiosk

Do you have a burning question? Do you want to spark a debate? Why not post a comment, leave a message, respond to a discussion topic or speak to an operator?

Call Forum Kiosk on 0121 643 0154 between 11.30am – 2.00pm on Thursday 19th March to be part of this interactive live art performance

Forum Kiosk will be documented through text and photographs, which will later be published in a book. All participants will be sent a limited edition printed book.

For more information go to:


2.5 Hours of Oxygen

Birmingham, 19 March 2009 11.30am-2.00pm

On Thursday March 19 a two-and-a-half hour group show, will take place in seven red K6 telephone boxes in the centre of Birmingham. 

The exhibition, entitled 2.5 Hours of Oxygen, will consist of diverse artistic interventions that ask what the private space of a phone box means, now that communication has become so public. Is there still a need for a place where things can be said that you don't want overheard on a bus or in a café? A place where you can be yourself, almost unobserved. 
The event runs for just two and half hours because according to urban myth, that's all the oxygen a telephone box can hold.

The seven phone boxes are sited centrally on Victoria Square, Temple Row and Eden Place and artists will be using them from 11.30am to 2.00pm.

The 7 artists include:

Gene-George Earle

Gene-George's work encapsulates intuitive responses and spontaneity to given situations, which he may or may not necessarily have authored. A number of works have elements left open for the fulfilment of the work, either incidentally or through co-operation with strangers, giving them an uncertainty or unpredictability he finds enticingly candid.

Julia O'Connell

Julia O'Connell explores language through secreting layers of text onto or under a fabric's surface using hand or machine stitching. Her work explores the stepping-stones of everyday life, giving a platform to seemingly unimportant moments.

Rebecca Gamble

Rebecca Gamble appropriates social activities through her artworks; using conversation as a starting point, she creates actual events, or social gatherings in both physical and virtual spaces

Alastair Levy

Alastair Levy is interested in the quiet subversion of the function of everyday things. The materials that he uses include office stationery, hardware products and domestic items. Through a process of experimenting with and manipulating these kinds of objects he make interventions that put a skew on our experience of the familiar and the mundane.

Ann Walker

Ann Walker explores the ambiguous space in-between and the possibilities of edges and borders using processes such as pinhole photography.


Art Yarn is a collaborative fibre arts project run by visual artists Rachael Elwell and Sarah Hardacre. Based in Salford, ArtYarn aim to use traditional knitting and crochet techniques in contemporary visual arts projects and recently ‘yarn bombed' sites around Liverpool as part of the Liverpool Biennial. Their work has been featured in national press and knitting publications and will be published in September 2009 in the forthcoming book ‘Yarn Bombing: The Art of Knitting Graffiti'.


Hinge, aka exhibition curator, Anne Forgan. will be exploring the making of the exhibition as an exercise in multi-noded communication.


A blog catch up…

I started my ‘be more creative' New Year well, with an invitation to create a site-specific artwork for the collaborative public art show, 2.5 Hours of Oxygen.

2.5 Hours of Oxygen is a public art project of a series of artistic interventions exploring the private space of the phone box in a time of ubiquitous communication.

Curator Anne Forgan has invited 7 artists to respond to 7 phone box locations in Birmingham City Centre for 2.5 hours on Thursday 19th March 2009 between 11.30am – 2.00pm.

This is the first time I have created work in response to someone else's written brief or concept, it has been an interesting process, in some ways easier -due to being given a durational time structure, location, date, planning and marketing support. Although I have encountered restrictions for the first time in my practice, due to the careful and corporate approach of getting permissions from the council and BT. -My interventions and performances to date have maybe been more playful and subversive.

Over the past two months I have visited the site, met with the curator, played with ideas, talked about ideas, researched ideas and scrapped ideas.

Now nearing the date and preparing the final details I have decided to log my day-to-day accounts in a blog. In hope that the project posts can develop and inform the work and possibly inform others planning a site-specific intervention or performance.


The project Forum Kiosk all started on Saturday 3rd January 2009 when the curator, Anne Forgan emailed me:

"hi, I found out about your work through some googling and I wondered if you'd be interested in a project I'm currently developing. I am staging a two and a half hour site specific event in three phone boxes in the centre of Birmingham in March. The event is something of a fond farewell to public phone boxes and is entitled 'two and a half hours of oxygen' – based on the urban legend that traditional red phone boxes contain just this amount of oxygen."

I responded the same day, and the artistic process began…