Throughout the weekend, backed by the soundtrack of the festivals live music, members of Young Women’s Music Project create a mural of musician Ayanna Witter-Johnson. Witter-Johnson is somewhat of a musical anomaly, her work is a synthesis of heritage, tradition, classicism and the contemporary which forges new ground in the British musical landscape. What makes her music so different is that such seemingly divergent influences are crafted into a cohesive whole, the likes of which could only be the product of Witter-Johnson. Jamaican Mento rhythms experienced in Witter-Johnsons childhood are expressed through the use of a cello, they find resonances with hip-hop and soul melodies in a way that is seldom (if at all) heard in mainstream music. This sonic rarity has propelled Witter-Johnson to performances at the Royal Albert Hall, the Barbican and the MOBO Awards.
As a proponent of cultural and artistic diversity Witter-Johnson uses her success to give back to her community by actively supporting YWMP. The mural depicts the musician carrying her now synonymous cello, isolated on an island but poised ready to thrust forth, her face painted in musical war paint symbolic of pioneering forefathers, battle ready and fearless.