V&A to host three-day Glastonbury Weekender


June 15, 2021

From 25th to 27th June, the V&A will host a three-day Glastonbury Weekender featuring a mix of digital experiences and in museum events and installations. This free programme builds on the V&A’s Glastonbury @ 50 research project that launched last year, delivered in partnership with the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC), part of UK Research and Innovation (UKRI).

Starting on 25th June, a one-day virtual conference will feature unrivalled insight into the unseen world and history of Glastonbury. Featuring collaborators, co-creators from the festival together with scholars in festival culture, this exclusive conference will go behind the stage to explore the evolution and influence of the Festival. Speakers include Green Fields Coordinator Liz Eliot, Head of Events at Greenpeace Bob Wilson, Founder and Creative Director of Arcadia Pip Rush, artist and Founder of Mutoid Waste Company Joe Rush, Founder of the Kidzfield Tony Cordy, artist and geographer Luke Piper, Dr Roxy Robinson and Dr Beatriz Garcia.

The Glastonbury Weekender running 26th-27th June includes responses to the Glastonbury Archive by artists, designers and students creating new, interdisciplinary work which champions the resilience of the performing arts in the wake of the last year and celebrates the extraordinary significance of the Festival’s social and cultural impact.

An immersive video experience that explores the landscape, mapping, history, and experience of attending Glastonbury will take place in the museum’s Lecture Theatre, as the V&A Glastonbury film archive is intertwined with memories and photographs from festival goers and collaborators.

In the museum’s iconic Raphael Gallery, a programme of classical and contemporary orchestral music will explore the landscape and mythology of the Glastonbury site. A selection of spoken word interpretations, soundscapes and moving image pieces inspired by festival culture, from students at London’s South Bank University, will be on display in the museum and online. Festival favourites the Kidzfield will bring fun family activities to the V&A garden over the weekend.

The weekend will also see the launch of Mapping Glastonbury, the V&A’s Interactive Map of the Festival, made possible by funding from the AHRC. Created by digital studio We are Freak, this online digital experience of Glastonbury Festival enables the public to explore the evolution and growth of the Festival across five decades.

The map invites users to discover stories, memories, objects, sounds and images, many collected following the V&A’s open call out in June last year. Highlights include hundreds of photographs, memories and oral histories collected from the public, new soundscapes and film experiences, all newly digitised to create unprecedented access. Original programmes, posters and additional objects have also been added from the museum’s Glastonbury Archive providing new ways for people to engage with the archive and the Festival history from all over the world.

The fully searchable database will be available to researchers and the public and will facilitate new research which will shed new light on the impact of Glastonbury Festival.

In 2014, the V&A became the home to the Glastonbury archive for the nation. Documenting the cultural importance of the world’s leading performance Festival, the collection brings together Glastonbury’s performance history across the stages and the years.

For more information, head to the V&A’s website.

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