Blazing sunshine became pouring rain quicker than Usain Bolt runs 100 meters at Hay. It’s raincoats over shorts!
Despite the downpours, there was no need to panic as every event at Hay is under shelter and there is nothing more satisfying than sitting with a warm drink in hand listening to some of the fascinating talks on offer. Yesterday began at the How The Light Gets In Festival, down the road from Hay Festival, in a discussion on ‘State Of Innovation’ with speakers including sculptor Richard Deacon, broadcaster/ filmmaker Dennis Marks, art critic Julian Spalding and historian Juliet Gardiner as chair. The talk was the perfect compliment to the previous evening’s discussion of contemporary art by YBA artist Gavin Turk back at Hay.
Later in the day, a buzz began, surrounding the discussion between Rob Wilkins and generation-defining author Terry Pratchett. Pratchett engaged the audience in a discussion about his all-time favourite words, why Trolls appear nude in the countryside yet dressed in the city and how nothing pleases him more than the fact that he does not wish to be taken “more seriously”. Pratchett dispensed insider information, to the delight of his fans, about his books, The World Of Poo, Snuff and his notorious fantasy comic book series, Discworld. During the Q&A session, he was asked about his attitude to death, referring to his publicised suffering from Alzheimer’s. He said he felt that he had inadvertently “made death popular”. Over the course of the evening, Pratchett offered viewers an insight into his fantastical world of lagniappe and lemon boiling, and it came as no surprise when the talk ended with cheers for an encore and Pratchett leaving the stage to a standing ovation of rapturous applause.
Drawing the evening to a close, former i-D editor Dylan Jones went i-N Conversation with photographer/ filmmaker Seamus Murphy, discussing his collaboration with previous i-D cover star, PJ Harvey, who approached Murphy to make eleven short films accompanying her album after she saw his film, Darkness Visible.
Stay tuned for more!
Hay Festival runs until 10th June 2012.
Text: Declan Higgins
Film: PJ Harvey ‘The Glorious Land’ by Seamus Murphy