Text by CLOT Magazine
Wysing Polyphonic is an annual music festival which returns this September for its 10th iteration. Organised by the Wysing Arts Centre, the festival boasts a variety of live music and performance events, in addition to a curated film and an agenda of lectures.
Wysing Arts Centre is a contemporary art facility located in Cambridgeshire with a residency programme created to promote creative output and innovation. The centre aims to cultivate an atmosphere of collaboration and experimentation. It’s a space where creatives can meet, exchange ideas and foster relationships. For its 30th anniversary, the centre teams up with Somerset House Studios which will guest curate Wysing Polyphonic 2019. Somerset House Studios is a workplace and residency set up to accommodate, support, and exhibit contemporary artists pushing boundaries and experimenting with new designs and technologies.
This year Wysing Arts Centre and Somerset House Studios are collaborating to offer an artist to work in-residence this summer to produce a film on the topic of connection which will be exhibited at the newly opened galleries at Somerset House Studios and performed at the Wysing Polyphonic 2019. The two organisations have partnered since the Studios was established in 2016, sharing a common goal to encourage and connect emerging experimental creatives in all fields.
Every season the Studios intend to explore a new topic and exhibit a range of works by their in-residence artists and alumni. For their inaugural season, the Studios is following the theme of Wysing Polyphonic, displaying the work of residency artists in both institutions. The theme will focus on connection beyond the physical: connection as a channel of communication; an incantation, returning, or heralding; the calling on an ‘other’ or unknown to understand different worlds and possibilities the organisers told us.
This year the artists chosen from an international open call to take up residency at Wysing were FAKA – Fela Gucci and Desire Marea – Johannesburg’s queer art collective. They will create a new film work for Wysing Polyphonic and present it at Somerset House Studios. In addition to FAKA, another in-residence artist – Cairo producer and multi-instrumentalist Ahmed El Ghazoly, aka ZULI, will be developing performances for the festival. The line-up also includes numerous new and returning artists and Wysing alumni worldwide.
The festival opens its doors on September 7, 2019, at Somerset House Studios.