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The Oram Awards 2020 winners announced

The six winners of The Oram Awards 2020 are Loula Yorke, NikNak (Nicole Raymond), Poulomi Desai, Una Lee, Vicky Clarke and Yifeat Ziv. The fourth annual awards recognising music creators innovating in music, sound and related technologies will see the winners receive talent development bursaries from PRS Foundation and a six-month mentoring programme.

BBC Radio 3’s Unclassified will introduce The Oram Award winners from Thursday, November 5th. The Elizabeth Alker-hosted show will profile one winner each week for the next six weeks.

The 2020 judging panel comprised 2019 Oram Awardee Nwando Ebizie (Lady Vendredi); composer and performer Nik Void (Factory Floor, Carter Tutti Void); BBC Radio 3 presenter Elizabeth Alker; Senior Lecturer at Goldsmiths University, Dr Iris Garrelfs; mastering engineer Katie Tavini; and representatives from the PRS Foundation; Grants Coordinator (meeting Chair), Westley Holdsworth and Grants and Programmes Manager, Elizabeth Sills.

Nik Void said: “I thoroughly enjoyed the experience of being involved in this year’s Oram Awards judging panel. I joined a panel whose collective experience across the industry brought diverse perspectives and a lively discussion. It was a real pleasure to see such a display of commitment across a range of practices from the applicants, and it was no easy task choosing the final six winners.

“With thanks to PRS Foundation and The New BBC Radiophonic Workshop for their role in championing the work of women and gender minority music creators, I look forward to seeing this new community of next generation musicians and artists thrive, creating new and exciting work that pushes the boundaries of innovation.”

Introducing the winners

Loula Yorke is a composer and performer who uses sound, video and participation to create artworks. Dancing in the spaces where the personal meets the political, her varied and noisy electronic music practice conjours moments of revolt as well as revealing hidden systems of control. Yorke runs femme-centred synth-building workshops Atari Punk Girls, and co-founded the SonitusLIVE curated livestreams.

NikNak (Nicole Raymond) is a Leeds based music creative; an artist, performer, presenter, producer and turntablist. She makes experimental music that mingles with other genres. Her debut album “Bashi” is a sonic exploration and retelling of her time spent in Turkey, due for release November 2020. As a turntablist and sound artist, she has worked with artists like Shiva Feshareki and Anna Meredith, in creating soundscape-based live improvised performances.

Poulomi Desai is a multidisciplinary artist and curator. Her work interrogates the politics of identity, listening and perception, inspired by her activist background and DIY post punk. She subverts broken sitars into new electronic instruments and melds circuit bent toys, optikinetic instruments, kitchen knives, and massage tools. Under Covid restrictions, she has been exploring the mini-oramics instrument (made by Tom Richards) using data from pandemics, migration and financial markets.

Una Lee is a South Korean, UK based artist working with sounds, stories and sensations. She sings, narrates, improvises, collects field recordings and makes graphic artworks. She creates immersive compositions, and designs performances and intervention scenarios. She is currently exploring, rethinking and contemplating the notion of ‘song’ through ‘Songs to Stay Awake to’, a spoken song project in collaboration with Poetry Jukebox.

Vicky Clarke is a sound and electronic media artist from Manchester. Working with sound sculpture, DIY electronics and human-machine systems, she explores our relationship to technology through sonic materiality, live audiovisual and browser-based artwork. She is currently working on her debut album SleepStates which explores ideas around machine addiction, broken transmissions and algorithmic sleep territories.

Yifeat Ziv is a London based vocalist, composer, sound artist and free improviser. She combines voice, electronics, field recordings and text to create interdisciplinary sound works that derive from her research of the human voice, technology, acoustic ecology and listening practices. In her performances and installations, she aspires to create situations where an active listening experience can emerge; an invitation to critically engage with sound.

For the details about The Oram Awards, go to oramawards.com.

Vicky Clarke image by Ben Williams. Yifeat Ziv image by MUPERPHOTO.

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