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Home of Metal exhibition celebrating Black Sabbath is going global


The exhibition is to tell fans' stories and tour other countries before returning to Birmingham.

Home of Metal is going global, with a major international touring exhibition to celebrate the musical influence of Black Sabbath. The show was first staged at Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery in 2011, showing how heavy metal was born in the city and then took over the world. And now it’s coming back, bigger and better than ever, in a three-year project which will see it touring to other countries before returning to Birmingham. Arts Council England is investing £450,000 in Digbeth-based arts organisation Capsule’s plans.

The new Home of Metal show will be centred around Black Sabbath’s fans around the world. The funding will help bring together fans with artists and academics to tell their stories and explore the cultural legacy of the band. The programme will launch in February 2017 in Birmingham on the final date of Black Sabbath’s last world tour. The organisers will be using social media to connect with fans, in countries as far afield as Brazil, India and Malaysia. Part of the project will be collecting stories from fans living under oppressive regimes to discover how they have shared music in ingenious ways.

The first year of the project will involve collating material, the second will be an international tour – venues to be announced – and then the exhibition will return to its Birmingham home in the third year. When Home of Metal opened five years ago it let visitors take a peek inside a recreation of Ozzy Osbourne’s living room in Lodge Road, Aston and strum a guitar like Tony Iommi. It attracted more than 200,000 people, including visitors from Australia, Brazil, Canada, Egypt, Finland, South Africa and the USA.

Tony Iommi says: “An artist or band’s success can be measured by their relationship with the fans and the success of the Home of Metal exhibition brought home just how dedicated and loyal ours are. It’s always humbling to realise how you’ve touched people’s lives with your music. A project where fans are actively involved would be great.”

Lisa Meyer, artistic director of Capsule, says: “This support from Arts Council England will enable Capsule to develop the next ambitious phase of Home of Metal and take the project to a global audience. We will be celebrating what is at the heart of the genre – the fans – and putting them centre stage.”


Roz Laws for Birmingham Mail, 30 November 2016


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