If Kyotographie founders Lucille Reyboz and Yusuke Nakanishi have a superpower, it’s the ability to select iconic locations in Kyoto for their festivals and transform them completely. Kyotographie, the photography festival they launched in 2013, has grown over the past 10 years to occupy ancient temples, secretive dojos, private homes and gallery spaces throughout the city for a fortnight each spring.
This year, the pair launched Kyotophonie, a biannual music festival to accompany Kyotographie, hoping to do for music what they did for photography — create an eclectic, undefinable event at unlikely locations around Japan’s old capital.
The first iteration in April and May featured an incongruous mix of musicians playing what might have been called “world music” a few decades ago. The highlights of the event were an acoustic performance by Malian singer-songwriter Salif Keita at Komyoin temple and various artists and DJs performing at Club Metro’s intimate basement space.