Convergence Sessions + Anika & Raoul Sanders’ The Writing Robot, Shy One, E.M.M.A, commune
Sessions

Convergence Sessions + Anika & Raoul Sanders’ The Writing Robot, Shy One, E.M.M.A, commune

£0.00

As part of London’s Convergence Festival, your Sessions ticket will take you from day to night, in a collision of talks, interactive presentations, debates and live music programme. On March 24th at The Curtain, Sessions presents a summit for risk-takers to challenge and reinvent possibilities of creative activism in a post-truth world. 

How much control do we have in a world of both the emancipation and excess of information?

Has the rapid evolution of tech changed the role of art?  

How can artists and the individual be heard in 2018?

By day, Convergence invites artists and brilliant thinkers to The Curtain to share how they are using creativity to dismantle power structures, react to personal and political issues and build possibilities for a brighter future. We’ll navigate the online underground with Musicologist Adam Harper, consider solutions for a more creative Brexit with Matthew Herbert, challenge elitism in cultural spaces with VR Creative Director Patrick Morgan, consider intersections and the need for feminism to operate beyond gender binary shesaid.so and debate the public role of the artist with Musician Anika.

By night, musician, writer and poet, Anika will perform, The Writing Robot. Annika Henderson is a musician, poet and artist who rose to fame as ANIKA with two highly acclaimed eponymous records (Recorded with Geoff Barrow of Portishead and his band Beak>, released on Stones Throw in the US). Writing Robot is a new collaborative project between Annika and Computer Programmer, Raoul Sanders. 

About Sessions

Sessions gives change-makers and risk-takers a platform to share thoughts, collaborate and interact with like-minded individuals and discuss how people and ideas are shaping the future of technology. The programme focuses on the countless opportunities in store for industry pioneers and curious creatives alike, and how using cutting-edge creativity can carve a positive path in this era of uncertainty.

This programme has been created with support from the British Council.

Agenda

10:30

Patrick Morgan: Rage with the Machine

Damien Hirst brought us 'Freeze' a young, innocent show beyond the galleries walls and imagination. Technology has given us the ARkit which allows us to go beyond populated spaces that aren't ours, maybe too Elitist to be allowed in. The smartphone is a new opportunity that artists will use as a viewfinder and gateway to show work.

10:50

Nora Al-Badri: The Other Nefertiti

The artist will discuss their decolonial artistic practice and will talk about their highly acclaimed project „The Other Nefertiti“ as well as about upcoming interventions such as the NefertitiBot, a decolonial chatbot in museums. The Other Nefertiti is a 3D-printed replica of the Nefertiti Bust, an ancient Egyptian artifact housed in the Neues Museum in Berlin. The artwork’s creation entailed the release of a high-resolution 3D data file that was shared freely on the internet. The work stands as proof of colonial pillaging and challenges notions of national ownership; it considers the role of copying in preservation and access to evidence in relation to global heritage. The project received wide media coverage for its unauthorized 3D scan of the artifact inside the museum and its public release despite the copyright holder’s exclusive reproduction rights.

11:50

Adam Harper: Underground Music Online: Platforms, Methods, Styles

Underground music seems more politically conscious today than it has been in at least a generation. It is a tradition that has often given voice to the oppressed and to those on the margins of society, but how have these goals manifested and been challenged in new technological and political contexts? What new forms of organization and sonic expression accompany the raising of consciousness and the imagination of a different tomorrow?

12:30

GAIKA in conversation with Kieran Yates: The Spectacle Empire

GAIKA talks about The Spectacular Empire. His uncompromising approach towards his music results in a myriad of themes and stories – digitisation of day to day life (MACHINE), to fear, death and the underworld (SECURITY), to love in the face of adversity (SPAGHETTO) - and that is, loosely speaking, only the outer layer of his work. He was recently announced as DAZED’s Political Editor At Large.

13:15

Break

13:45

Forest Fringe: The Amateurs Club

Forest Fringe, an artist collective that was initially founded as an alternative venue at the Edinburgh Fringe, have recently taken a brilliantly exciting U-Turn. The collective founded "The Amateurs Club," a monthly meet-up at Somerset House where they invite a different film professional to teach them and their community a skill related to film making, so that they can shoot a feature in 2019. The project is about exploring creativity and value outside of a monetary professionalised context.

14:00

Producergirls: Artist led DIY workshops to encourage girls to explore music production

Producergirls founder E.M.M.A. discusses what led her to start grass roots electronic music workshops for women, how the movement has grown since 2016 and the barriers participants have experienced which stopped them from learning production until they applied to the workshop. A voluntary initiative propelled by a group of affiliated artists from around the UK, the producergirls collective has raised close to £3000 from a kickstarter campaign to fund workshops throughout the year.

14:20

shesaid.so

Established in September 2014, shesaid.so has a diverse international community, comprising of women from across all sectors of the industry - from tech to record labels, PR to management, and more. With headquarters in London and LA, the shesaid.socommunity has 13 active chapters around the world including NYC, Paris, Berlin, Mumbai and more. Our vision is to connect and empower marginalized communities in the music industry with a focus on women's rights.

14:40

shesaid.so. presents: Intersections and the need for feminism to operate beyond gender binary

The term "intersectionality" was coined by UCLA law professor and critical race theorist Kimberlé Crenshaw in 1989/1990 to refer to the relationship between race and gender in light of US-born feminism and its impact on black women, in particular. It has since developed a multitude of meanings, some of them more accurate than others, to capture additional layers of challenge that certain groups of marginalized communities face in addition to gender identity and race: sexual orientation, economic background and class, disability and so on. This discussion aims to explore these various meanings as they relate to the feminist movement in music in an effort to enable a universe of meaning where all activist efforts find common ground, collaborative opportunities and converging tactics.

15:40

Break

16:00

Music Venue Trust and grassroots music venues - fighting for culture under threat

The UK's Grassroots Music Venue network is the ignition of the UK music industry; an essential platform for artists in the early stages of their music careers. In recent years we have lost many grassroots venues to soaring business rates, expansive property development, oppressive licensing conditions and a harsh economic climate. Music Venue Trust's Alex Mann discusses the work of the Trust and their fight to preserve and protect our Grassroots Music network for the benefit of venues, communities and upcoming artists.

16:30

Matthew Herbert: Brexit Big Band

Following two acclaimed big band albums, Matthew Herbert announces a third in response to Brexit. This time though, it’s being put together differently. It is a two year collaborative project right across Europe celebrating artistic and musical collaboration and communities across national borders.The project will begin in England at the point at which the UK government triggers Article 50 and then run in parallel across Europe with concerts, recording sessions and workshops, culminating in an album release date at the same moment that Britain leaves the EU in 2019.

17:00

Anika in conversation with Kieran Yates

Speakers

Adam Harper (Music Critic and Musicologist)

Adam Harper is a music critic and musicologist. He has written on musical pasts and futures for Wire, The FADER, Resident Advisor and Dummy as well as on his blog Rouge's Foam, and lectures at Goldsmiths and City, University of London, Oxford Brookes University and the Universities of Birmingham and Oxford. He is the author of Infinite Music: Imagining the Next Millennium of Human Music-Making (Zero Books, 2011).

Alex Mann (External Relations, Music Venue Trust)

Alex’s music industry career began as an artist manager, touring venue promoter and press officer followed by two years at an independent label and publisher as a marketing and promotion coordinator. He moved to Arts Council England in 2003, where he spent three years working as an assistant policy officer in the areas of arts and health, criminal justice, cultural diversity and disability.

Alex worked as a regional official for the Musicians’ Union both regionally and nationally. He provided support, assistance and representation for MU members advising on employment, legal, intellectual property and legislative issues which impact upon musicians. His role within the MU Live Performance department focussed on national and international strategy, lobbying and advocacy for members working in the live sector.

Alex’s work for Music Venue Trust involves representing the organisation at events, meetings and conferences both nationally and internationally. He also deals with political, legislative and policy making areas which impact upon grassroots music venues.

Amanda Maxwell (Boiler Room)

Amanda Maxwell works at Boiler Room's London HQ in the music team, sitting across activations for International Women's Day and other community rooted projects. She's a board member of women in music network shesaid.so and a regular contributor to panel talks on subjects related to inclusion, representation and equal empowerment within the creative industries. Amanda manages a number of London based artists and DJs.

Annika Henderson (Musician, Artist, Poet)

Annika Henderson is a musician, poet and artist who rose to fame as ANIKA with two highly acclaimed eponymous records (Recorded with Geoff Barrow of Portishead and his band Beak>, released on Stones Throw in the US), and was touring the world. She is well known as a DJ too, hosts a radio program on BCR – Berlin Community Radio, is seen and heard in experimental cinema and collaborates with a variety of artists and musicians among them Jandek, Shackleton,Dave Clarke, Michael Rother (Neu!), Andreas Reihse of Kreidler, T.Raumschmiere (Sleeping Pills and Habits), Doireann O'Malley, Ricardo Domeneck, Stine Omar / Max Boss (EASTER), Phillip Geist (for a live video mapping project and soundtrack in Tehran, Iran) or Yann Tiersen. Last year Anika released an album with her new Mexico City-based project, Exploded View, on Sacred Bones (US).

Antonia Odunlami (Music Editor, gal-dem)

Antonia Odunlami is Music Editor at online and print magazine gal-dem - written, run and controlled by women of colour. She also produces radio shows on BBC Radio 1Xtra and Asian Network and is one of the co-hosts on the gal-dem show on Reprezent Radio. Antonia is passionate about documenting and championing emerging artists from all around the world.

E.M.M.A (Electronic Producer and DJ, Founder of producergirls)

E.M.M.A. is a London-based electronic producer and DJ, with music on Pastel Prism, Astral Plane and Coyote Records. She founded the producergirls collective in 2016, working alongside club legends Nightwave and Ikonika, grime pioneers Dexplicit and P Jam to provide free electronic music workshops around the UK for girls who are interested in exploring it as a creative outlet.
Pic by Rosaline Shahnavaz

Eric Mackay (Executive Vice President, Global Digital Strategy, Warner/Chappell Music)

Eric Mackay was appointed EVP, Global Digital Strategy at Warner/Chappell Music, the global music publishing arm of Warner Music Group, in October 2017. He is responsible for the music publisher’s global digital strategy, as well as expanding its commercial partnerships. In this role, he reports to Jon Platt, Chairman and CEO of Warner/Chappell Music. His role focuses on partnering with innovative services that are inventing different ways for fans to enjoy music and work with them to help drive more revenues and exposure for Warner/Chappell’s stellar roster of songwriters.
Mackay originally joined Warner/Chappell in 2015, as Head of Digital Europe. He went on to serve as Vice President, Digital, Europe, Middle East & Africa, and Asia Pacific from September 2016 until he took up his current role. Before joining Warner/Chappell, Mackay worked at various companies including Vevo, CELAS, White Noise and Integral Management. He holds an LLM with Distinction in Entertainment Law from the UK’s University of Westminster.

Forest Fringe (Artist Collective)

Forest Fringe is an artist-led organisation run collaboratively by UK artists Ira Brand, Andy Field and Deborah Pearson. Together they create festivals, host residencies and occasionally commission new work as a way of helping support a large and diverse community of independent artists working across and between theatre, dance and live art.

GAIKA (Artist)

Brixton born-and-raised, GAIKA is a vocalist and producer who’s ‘gothic dancehall' straddles industrial electronics, twitchy bashment and mutated strains of leftfield rap and R&B. He has collaborated with Atlanta’s Awful Records collective, futuristic R&B priestess Kelela and enigmatic maestro Dean Blunt - all before releasing 2016’s lauded Spaghetto EP on Warp.

Harriet Moss (shesaid.so)

Harriet Moss is Global Creative Manager at Manners McDade, a London-based music publisher, specialising in new classical and electronic music since 2001, with a roster including Nils Frahm, Max Cooper, Balmorhea, Aisha Devi, Throwing Snow and Christian Löffler. Harriet is also London Director for the leading voluntary international Women in Music organisation & network, shesaid.so. The network provides mentorship and regular events for its 2600+ global members, including recent collaborations with Boiler Room, Spotify, Live Nation, Warner UK and Bestival. Harriet hosts Soho Radio’s monthly Soho Classical show; is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and is recognised on the 2017 Music Industry Alternative Power 100 List.

Kieran Yates (Journalist)

Kieran Yates is a London-based journalist, and broadcaster who had spent the last 10 years writing about youth culture, dance music and politics. She writes regularly for The Guardian, FADER and Vice, and will be in discussion with GAIKA and ANIKA discussing the thrill of our current moment, and what's next.

Matthew Herbert (Artist)

Matthew Herbert is a prolific and accomplished musician, artist, producer and writer whose range of innovative works extends from numerous albums (including the much-celebrated Bodily Functions) to Ivor Novello nominated film scores (Life in a Day) as well as music for the theatre, Broadway, TV, games and radio. He has performed solo, as a DJ and with various musicians including his own 18 piece big band all round the world from the Sydney opera house, to the Hollywood Bowl and created installations, plays and opera.  

He has remixed iconic artists including Quincy Jones, Serge Gainsbourg, and Ennio Morricone and worked closely over a number of years with musical acts as diverse as Bjork and Dizzee Rascal.  He has been sampled by J Dilla for Slum Village and another of his pieces (Cafe de Flore) inspired a movie by Jean-Marc Vallee (Dallas Buyers Club). He has produced other artists such as Roisin Murphy, The Invisible, Micachu and Merz and released some of these works alongside others on his own label – Accidental Records. He also set up NX records with Goldsmiths University to support the release of music from alumni and others. Notable collaborators have included chef Heston Blumenthal, playwrights Caryl Churchill and Duncan Macmillan, theatre director Lyndsey Turner, musician Arto Lindsay and writer Will Self but he is most known for working with sound, turning ordinary or so-called found sound in to electronic music. His most celebrated work ONE PIG followed the life of a pig from birth to plate and beyond. He is relaunching an online Museum of Sound and is the creative director of the new Radiophonic Workshop for the BBC. His debut play The Hush was performed at the National Theatre, his debut opera The Crackle at the Royal Opera House and he continues to work on projects for the screen as well as the stage. His debut book called The Music is soon to be published.

Nora Al-Badri (Multidisciplinary Artist)

Berlin-based multidisciplinary artists Nora Al-Badri and Nikolai Nelles have worked together since 2009. Their artistic practice encompasses visual art, documentary filmmaking and cultural activism. Their work addresses hegemonic and neo-colonial power structures and representations of the Global North and South, reflecting on the absurdity of the human condition. The pair stage interventions to challenge social infrastructures and institutions through civil disobedience, and pursue a critical re-evaluation of the cultural commons.
photo credit: Karim Ben Khalifa

Patrick Morgan (VR Artist and Creative Director)

Trained at the Royal College of Art, Patrick has worked as a commercial artist for over 20 years receiving commissions from famous designers and exclusive patrons; Yves Saint Laurent, Tom Ford, Dior, Fendi, The Royal Academy of Arts, The London Olympics, and was personally commissioned to do a portrait of US Vogue Creative Director Grace Coddington. Patrick had lectured for over a decade at the prestigious Istituto Marangoni Milan, London and Paris in fashion and design also giving talks at Goldsmiths, Tate Modern, NABA Milano and RCA.

Major works created in collaboration with Tom Ford for the English National Ballet, Ballet Russe’s 'The Firebird', which was then reused to represent Art and Culture at The Mayor of London's Office for the Olympics during 2012. Morgan also designed the Justin Timberlake world tour and most recently designing for Christian Dior Couture and James Bond film 'Spectre'.
photo credit: nicola favaron

Raoul Sanders (Artist and Software Developer)

Raoul Sanders works between Science, Arts and Technology. He wrote his first writing robot in the early 90s. He studied arts and literature, was founding member of groups like "association dissociative" and "IMPEXunlimited" and works as Artist and Software Developer.

shesaid.so

shesaid.so is a curated network of women with active roles in the music industry. We aim to create an environment that supports collaboration, diversity and inclusion.

Established in September 2014, shesaid.so has a diverse international community, comprising of women from across all sectors of the industry - from tech to record labels, PR to management, and more. With headquarters in London and LA, the shesaid.so community has 13 active chapters around the world including NYC, Paris, Berlin, Mumbai and more. Our vision is to connect and empower marginalized communities in the music industry with a focus on women's rights.

Shy One

Mali Larrington-Nelson is 27 years old, but already she's been involved deeply in music for nearly a decade. It began for her in 2003, just as grime was emerging as a musical force and having its “wot u call it” moment. A youth club DJ course with scratch wizard DJ Blakey gave her the bug, she began to collect those early white labels – by Wiley, Target, Danny Weed, DaVinChe, Musical Mobb, Dizzee, Wookie and Scratcha – and to DJ as part of a crew.

Just a year later she began to play with Fruityloops, trying to find her own sound within the spectrum of grime. Undeterred by those who called her beats “weird” or “different”, Mali disguised herself behind the Shy One alter-ego, putting her beats online with only a cartoon face to identify the artist.

Though she loved grime's innovation and energy, its insular attitude – and particularly the dominance of unreliable and flighty MCs over producers – meant its appeal began to wear a little thin. Meanwhile Mali began to pick up on dubstep sounds, and go back to hip hop, jazz and the whole wider world of music, and gradually drifted away first from grime and then from production itself.

Thankfully, though, the support of Scratcha DVA convinced her that her skills and eclectic tastes still had value. When he signed the “Decaffeinated Love EP” to his label, she began to take things more seriously, investing in a keyboard and monitors and beginning to hone her tracks for serious soundsystems. Feeling able to cut loose from constraints of tempo or genre, she began to take in the influence of everything she listened to and make it her own.

Now unconstrained by anyone's demands, she has been able to hone a distinctive sound that keeps the lo-fi punch and quirky synths of grime but explores her funkier instincts through house rhythms and varied tempos. Now, with “Bedknobs and Boomkicks” we see the emergence of a fully-fledged talent, schooled through years of creative hard work and hard knocks and completely confident in who she is musically.

Tia Simon-Campbell (Co-Founder, BBZ)

Tia Simon-Campbell is Co-Founder of BBZ (Bold Brazen Zamis OR Babes) an exhibition / tun up centring femme identity & eradicating misogyny for queer womxn, trans folk and non binary people of colour. Providing a platform exploring a plethora of mediums primarily within Visual Arts while interrupting accessibility issues within arts institutions.