The South London artist considers his polymorphic approach ahead of the release of a new album
“What do you know about doing the most just to do less?” With this simple question, Tariq Disu opens Process of a Polymath: An Introduction to Strawberry Head, a new short film exploring the artist’s creative process.
Springing straight from Disu’s own mind, Process of a Polymath is a demonstration of the elements at the heart of the South Londoner’s output. As it documents the artist moving gracefully through moments of verse, music and dance, we watch as he muses on his own polymorphic approach through the lens of a self-penned jeremiad. “I just wanted to dance and I wanted to talk,” Disu explains. “Words are wind. It’s me speaking from different perspectives.”
The multi-layered piece is set against the rumbling backdrop of “Maybe Later”, the lead track from the artist’s forthcoming album Strawberry Head. Created as a collaboration between Disu and Lucent and directed by Taz Psaras, the video is accompanied by a soon-to-be-released series from photographer William Arkle which captures the artist’s beautiful choreography in motion.
Questions from “Maybe Later” punctuate this visual story. Disu takes time to examines the drive that pushes him forward and sometimes threatens to spread him too thinly. That weight and responsibility smudges the dim-lit piece until the final moments when the artist shrugs it all off with a smile. “That’s just Tariq,” he concludes. Reflecting on the notion of doing too much, Disu is self-effacing: “The polymath thing is more of a piss-take,” he explains. “I’m 22. I don’t know shit and I’m still learning.”
He may still be learning but Disu – an independent artist – is rigorous when it comes to work that has his name on it. His forthcoming record, an eight-track web of sounds and references is woven out of Disu’s carefully placed poetic verses layered over his own productions and set against cherry-picked, artfully moulded samples. Listen carefully and you’ll hear fragments of SZA or a melody hummed by Lafawndah. The main presence, however, is the artist himself and Strawberry Head is a project entirely of Disu’s own making.
Strawberry Head will be released on 25 August.