This film is part of Free

Arthur Dooley

A middle class designed city with no style - Arthur Dooley pulls no punches in Birmingham.

News 1971 8 mins

From the collection of:

Logo for Media Archive for Central England


For the Liverpool born artist Arthur Dooley a 1971 visit to the city of Birmingham with its bustling ring-road and what he calls "filing cabinets in the sky" is not a time to celebrate modernism but a chance to castigate the architects and celebrate the neglected talents of the working class. The "streets should belong to the people" he contends and, as he joins the pedestrians forced into dimly lit walkways, you have to agree with him.

Arthur Dooley was best known for creating sculptures in both the Catholic and Anglican cathedrals in Liverpool. In 1972 he presented a television view of his own beloved city of Liverpool called One Pair of Eyes, which again cast him as the voice of the common people against the worst excesses of post-war city planning.