VEGA|ARTS is a new visionary initiative that links Denmark's most important music venue, with ambitious and transgressive contemporary art in an investigation of coming together through art. Over a one-year period (May 2019 to May 2020), VEGA|ARTS will include performances, installations, exhibitions, talks, workshops and thematical threads that combine the hybrid and performative art practices with the intense, intimate and cultural space of the live concert.
How VEGA|ARTS will be integrated
VEGA|ARTS wishes to introduce new or modified works and develop artistic research that can be both a concrete collaborations between a video artist and music live acts; a performance during an concert combining visuals and a number of performers creating a unique experience of bodily and ritual presence OR as major events in the festival format, where works from several artists are installed and performed throughout the building over a weekend.
The invited artists are
Kristoffer Akselbo, Sidsel Christensen (NO), Lilibeth Cuenca Rasmussen, Sophie Dupont, Jeannette Ehlers, Christian Falsnaes, Jenny Gräf Sheppard (DK/US), Kosmologym (DK/US/UK), Jakob Kudsk Steensen, Marie Kølbæk Iversen, Ragnhild May, Ursula Nistrup, Hans Rosenström (FIN), Helle Siljeholm (NO), Søren Thilo Funder, Tori Wrånes (NO), YOKE
A Colossal Weekend is also the introduction of an ambitious art initiative trying to push the borders of artistic practice and cultural experience at VEGA under the title VEGA|ARTS.
VEGA|ARTS will feature four performative art works integrated in the programme and building during A Colossal Weekend: Jenny Gräf Sheppard (Friday), Kristoffer Akselbo (Friday, Saturday), YOKE (Saturday), Marie Kølbæk Iversen & Katinka Fogh Vindelev (Sunday).
The works are meant to expand and express the depths of the live concerts as cultural and bodily experiences and most of the works are collaborative work between artist from both the visual and musical field. VEGA|ARTS will also feature an exhibition space presenting works by the participating artists (open all weekend). Opening Friday 10th at 5-7 pm. Drinks, snacks, chat with the artists, DJ and get-together.
And the occasion of a festival celebrating the dark, experimental and maybe even ritual sides of the musical spectrum seems more suitable than ever.
Jenny Gräf Sheppard (US/DK) is an interdisciplinary artist, Sheppard’s work includes projects that explore sound in relation to memory and agency, including collaborative projects with people with Alzheimer’s, highly participatory sound works, and musical sound performances. Her research includes sound’s impact on the body, cognition and the natural world.
For A Colossal Weekend Jenny Gräf Sheppard presents Delivery of Stones – performed by The Stone Carving Oraclestra – a cross-disciplinary durational performance offering the audience new modes of communing, divined sound readings, forceful stones and next world chorals.
Performers: Jenny Gräf Sheppard, Freja Kreutzfeldt Kristensen, Kirstine Lindemann, Maria Brænder, Elise Brewer, and Thilde Fjord Madsen. Costumes by Elisabeth Kiss. Visual synthesis: Derek Holzer
Kristoffer Akselbo's artistic practice is oriented towards the spectator and the context. His works take form through performative strategies creating new possible understandings of the virtual and physical reality. Often issues of cultural and economic systems and their powerplay are examined and performed leaving us confused or even unpleasant.
In the days and settings of A Colossal Weekend, Akselbo introduces the performance installation It’s The End of The World as We Know it introducing a hard toiled, outcast persona living in the outer rims of our existence and conscience, questioning our capacities of understanding the limits of humanity and the world as we know it.
YOKE is a combined art collective and design studio that develops exploratory artworks and interactive exhibitions for an international array of institutions and clients. With a dedicated team of mediation experts, spatial designers, engineers and software magicians, YOKE engages with the contemporary art- and culture scene to explore new formats of immersive experience design.
In the festivals last deep breaths YOKE will engage in a visual dialogue with first the british composer and experimental cellist Jo Quail and finally the headliners of the night: Celéste and their iconic stage performance. Playing with both musical, visual and bodily presence and movement, YOKE’s light installation Konstruktur heads out in deep, aggressive and expansive waters.
KONSTRUKTUR is created as a living architectural model based on light and soundscape to experiment with new spatial structures of light. The installation consists of 196 specially designed and hand built light sources which are individually programmed. By adding smoke and sound, the light sources become part of a greater whole that can be experienced as physical structures in the room and a slight sense of next stage of our existence.
The performances and installations of Marie Kølbæk Iversen challenge representational powers of media, which are in turn conceived as a multiplicity of forces that produce effects and affects across human, cultural, technological, geological, and political bodies.
For A Colossal Weekend Marie Kølbæk Iversen collaborates with composer and classical singer Katinka Fogh Vindelev to present their opera Moonologue—a performance which will take place in the former water reservoir Cisternerne as an installation and an opera for two singers celebrating the mythical priestess and Jovian satellite Io.
Moonologue is a result of Kølbæk Iversen’s longterm artistic investigation of Io, and it is performed by Morten Grove Frandsen (countertenor) and Katinka Fogh Vindelev (soprano). The performance was commissioned as a part of the widely praised exhibition The Moon at Louisiana – Museum of Modern Art in 2018.
Moonologue will be performed at Cisternerne on May 12 at 7pm with a prologue by the London-based cellist and composer Jo Quail.
See and excerpt from Moonologue below.