The V&A museum is to host a three-day Glastonbury Weekender featuring a virtual conference, a new interactive database and installations inspired by the festival archive.
Running from 25-27 June, the three-day Glastonbury celebration features a mix of digital experiences and in-museum events and installations. The free programme builds on the V&A's 'Glastonbury @ 50' research project that launched last year, a pilot collaboration between AHRC and the V&A that will look into and archive artefacts, stories and the history of Glastonbury Festival "to increase our understanding and appreciation of this iconic cultural event," according to the organisation.
The virtual Glastonbury One-Day Conference on 25 June will feature insights into the unseen history of Glastonbury through featured collaborators, festival co-creators and scholars in festival culture. Speakers include 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 from 26-27 June includes responses to the Glastonbury Archive by artists, designers and students creating new, interdisciplinary work. As part of the event, an immersive video experience that explores the landscape, mapping, history, and experience of attending Glastonbury will be on show in the museum's Lecture Theatre.
In the museum's 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. The festival's Kidzfield will be organising family activities in 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 created by digital studio We are Freak, this online digital version of Glastonbury Festival lets users explore the evolution and growth of the Festival over five decades. Glastonbury Mapping is part of a more comprehensive database project which will enable audiences to search Glastonbury's performance history across the stages and the years. Its map features stories, memories, objects, sounds and images, many collected following the V&A's open call out for submissions last June. Original programmes, posters and additional objects have also been added from the museum's Glastonbury Archive.
"Glastonbury Festival's rich and diverse archive is an incredible resource and reflects over fifty years of performance history capturing social, cultural and political change. Festival organisers have paved the way for global festival culture and since its inception have driven awareness of environmental issues while enabling limitless creative expression," says Kate Bailey, V&A Senior Curator of Theatre and Performance.
"We hugely miss the shared and collective experience of festivals, but this AHRC project is a great opportunity to celebrate the unique ethos of Glastonbury, its extraordinary impact, and ongoing influence, and provides a platform for practitioners to create innovative new work inspired by the V&A collections."