How can we show the changing landscape of Birmingham? The collection comprises 10,700 prints, drawings, watercolours, postcards, photographs and paintings depicting every district of Birmingham, and its people and places, from the earliest known views of the town created in the 18th century up to the present.

Portraits of Birmingham people include artists, political and civic figures, manufacturers and businesspeople, scientists and medical professionals as well as families, and working people. The collection also includes material depicting parts of Warwickshire, Worcestershire, Staffordshire and Shropshire, as well as Wales and Scotland, reflecting the wider interests of some of Birmingham’s topographical artists.