International Festival
of Contemporary Music
and Visual Arts

The range of our interest includes all genres of contemporary music, visual and performance art.

What we have in mind, while talking about contemporary music in the context of our festival, are music forms derived from classical sources, as well as these related to jazz, ethno or rock music. We are interested in open music forms, merging elements of experimentation, improvisation (as the highest form of composition), as well as forms collaborating with visual disciplines of art.

This year's edition of the festival is closely related to the varied activity of John Cage. This is why the entire first day of the festival will be devoted to this composer, thinker and one of the most important characters of the 20th century.

For this reason, on this day we will be able to see performances of such artists as Krzysztof Knittel and Iwona Mironiuk, as well as of one of the greatest interpreters of John Cage's music – Szablocs Esztenyi from Hungary.

The following days of the festival are filled with performances of great artists. The audience will have the opportunity to admire Risa Takita - a Japanese butoh dancer, Nick Didkovsky – an American guitarist and a member of the legendary Fred Frith Guitar Quartet, Subtle Lip Can - a Canadian contemporary music trio. On the third and last day of the festival the guests can expect the greatest feast - two performances from Marc Ribot, known for his cooperation with Tom Waits and the album 'Los Cubanos Postizos'.

Speaking of visual arts, we mean performance art as well as video art, visual and audiovisual installations, painting, photography and film. It is more difficult to describe the way we choose visual artists for the festival. What is presented at the festival has to be outstanding, personal and original. In that case we can also use the term 'contemporary visual art', which remains close to the tradition but is created now and with reference to the reality of the world of art (modern techniques or means of expression) as well as contemporary social issues.

The 8th Mózg Festival starts with the opening of a group exhibition of artists from Łódź, Gdańsk, Bydgoszcz and Berlin and the art works presented remain in close relation to John Cage's idea. Apart from the above, every day after the concerts the festival moves to Mózg club. This will be the place for the activity of electronic music producers. We will be hosting Sub Spa, Kateryna Zavoloka from Ukraine and Laetita Morais from Portugal. During the festival, the audience will be also given the possibility to watch films documenting the activity of John Cage, the most famous performances of his pieces and film documentaries devoted to improvisation: 'On The Edge' and 'Step Across the Border'.

In the process of creating each edition of the festival, a lot of focus is put on blurring the unnecessarily marked out borders between music and visual arts. All disciplines of art have been converging and merging for years, it is a natural process worth supporting.

Professor Bogusław Schaeffer, one of the greatest contemporary Polish composers once said: 'tradition has to be respected but we have to remember that we create tradition here and now'. With his words in mind our aim is to choose artists in a way that presents the author's original and innovative art, with respect to tradition, or rather, in respect of the most important achievements of the time that has passed.

The festival is not only a presentation of the works of artists, its programme also includes workshops, meetings and evenings of improvised music. 8th Mózg Festival is a feast, it's the essence of what the group of people has been doing for nearly 18 years while creating 'Mozg', the place that was brought to life by and for the people involved and interested in independent art, the art treated as an instrument of perception.

8th Mózg Festival Director
Sławek Janicki