On a whim I applied to be a featured artist at AUM New Year's Festival in South Head, Auckland 2018. I had heard great things about this festival from many friends who had been to previous ones. Being an artist means I was granted 3 tickets. Thanks to AUM organisers and your generosity! And a huge thanks to my crew Lumiel and Captain Jayman. We spent the cost of two tickets to buy new things the installation needed, (like solar panels and rope. Can never have enough rope!)
AUM presented an excellent challenge as our preferred forest setting wasn't available. Instead we had about ten trees in a circle to work with as an inner area, set in a lovely grassy crater near the Main Stage, Rather than using the nature temple layout, we worked to use the same artwork to create a general hang out spot and regeneration zone. This is great example about how my art changes according to the environment it's set up in.
We changed the focus of the space by hanging the more spiritual elements were on the outer side of the installation. This was so that participants could interact with them if they wanted to, or ignore them if they didn't. The inner area was more neutral, and wonder provoking, decorated with the Constellations and Shadows. The inner area also featured The Grandmother Tree, and had a "grandchild" shrub next to it (gosh that was cute! And I even got a message from someone saying how much they loved that specific aspect). There were mats on the floor for sitting on, and it was lit up at night time.
It was pretty amazing, walking into the space at night time and listening to the people who were leaving, overhearing people say "wow, I feel so grounded now" and "I feel much better, I think I'll go back to the dancefloor". This was very satisfying, because this is what the self-managing design intended... to be a safe place of revitalisation and give people on New Years Eve the boost they needed to continue with the night. And just to clarify, we didn't need to stay in the space and work with people. The art work holds the peaceful energy on its own. We visited through out the night, but also could be found on the dance floors.
This AUM layout allows for a more comfortable space for workshops. I'm pretty excited about this, as I've been wanting to transition to something like this for a while, with the aim to tour with it eventually. It was great to have the Trees at AUM to give me the challenge of creating this new space. And it still all fits into 3 suitcases, (lighting included).