Saturday, 19 July 2014 01:00

WOMAD Art Commission, a first for 2014 Featured

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WOMAD is so much more than the premier world music festival and this year will see the very first WOMAD Art Commission.

Jeni Walwin and Tammy Bedford who curate and produce WOMAD’s World of Art have commissioned a new piece of work from artist Neville Gabie. Gabie, the artist in residence at the Olympic Park from 2010-12, will be producing a unique and thought-provoking artwork called Experiments in Black and White at the festival.

The 3-part work for the festival is an exploration of four fundamental aspects of the natural world - ice, chalk, oil and air.

There will be five short films, one recently completed for this commission - all featuring the artist as a performer working with ice, chalk and oil in arduous, physical conditions which will heighten awareness of these vital natural elements.

Secondly there will be a live performance drawing where the artist will attach a large chalk boulder to a rope to create a linear drawing along the tarmac road that runs through the site. (at 11am to 12 noon - Friday, Saturday and Sunday)

Over the three and a half days of the festival 1,111 festival goers will be invited to fill a bag with their own breath. Participants will be asked to write their postal address and to suggest where this 'collective breath' might be released. It is a reminder that the invisible atmosphere and its ability to maintain health is as valuable as the very visible natural resources we consume.  (at 10am to 7pm - Friday, Saturday, Sunday)

After the festival Neville Gabie will travel to one of the suggested locations, attach the pressurised vessel to a large, purpose-built sound instrument, release the air, and record the sound and action on film. Postcards with a photographic record of the event and a link to the website where the sound can be heard will then be posted to all contributors.

In addition there will be a variety of talks over the festival weekend programmed in conjunction with the University of Bristol Cabot Institute - a multidisciplinary research institute about living with environmental uncertainty.

For more information on Experiments in Black and White go to

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