Od Arts Festival 2020: Alone with Everybody, 14 -16 MAY 2021

Od Arts Festival takes its name from the Od: a crooked stream that meanders through the villages of East and West Coker.

A year ago, when we first dreamed up our theme for Od Arts Festival 2020, we could never have imagined how relevant it would become.

Alone with Everybody was our way of thinking about solitude – as experienced by people close to us in our community, as well as an important part of the creative process for artists and writers. We also sought to understand global trends of nationalism and isolationism, emerging in countries around the world.

Now, as Covid-19 spreads through populations globally, more of us are starting to realise that isolation is not only something suffered by – or a luxury afforded to – certain people. Isolation might also be an ethical choice to withdraw. Isolation has become a way in which we can protect our communities, even while forming communities is the best way of caring for those who are alone.

When we launched the festival programme at our Solitary Encounters seminar on the 13 March, we were hoping that Od Arts Festival could go ahead as planned in May, but it was soon clear that this was not going to be possible. It is important to us that everyone, especially vulnerable people in our community, have the opportunity to experience artworks and share ideas, without putting their health at risk. We intend to postpone Od Arts Festival until 14 -16 May 2021, when it will be safe for all of us to gather again.

We are so grateful for the continued support and understanding of our artists, funders, partners and wider community. Please take care and we’ll be in touch soon.

The Festival Team; Simon, Vickie, Chantelle & Rowan x

“It was a really exciting, unusual event – proves that not all good things happen in big cities!”

Visitor, Od Arts Festival 2018