Alchemy Arts Collective was invited to travel to Costa Rica, leaving behind any, and all, attachments to being cold. This was our second go at fresh pipas, succulent mangos and an endless sheen of sweat glistening to our bodies. Coming from the ends of the Earth we spent 3 1/2 weeks on a cattle property turned festival site within a stones-throw of the Pacific's nectar!
Envision Festival is located in Uvita, just north of the Osa Peninsula. The fourth annual event has gathered it's momentum and each year seems to hone the vision that much closer. Our role this edition was no small undertaking.
Upon arrival it was like a dream come true. Flat land, crashing surf sounding in the distance and plenty of shade canopy for our bodies to acclimate under. Truthfully, it's quite the contrast to icebergs and frozen wonderlands to visit the tropics... what more could you ask for???
We came with one intention. To bring the heart of the festival to life in the Village. Our overall outlook was to design and lead the infrastructure build of 11 food vendor booths, 20 merchandise booths, a tea-house/coffee shack, an information station/travel center, a stage with adequate daytime shade for presentations, a dish washing station, a kids zone, and an interactive climbing structure. All this in the span of two weeks! Our crew consisted of up to a dozen local Tico builders and eight volunteers on any given day. Everything we created was built from bamboo, rope, palm fronds, and plastic sheeting. As well, the bamboo and palms were harvested from no further than 40 miles from the festival site! 'Local' has a whole new meaning when working in the tropics!
In the end, we built the skin and bones to the environment. They were organic, sculptural structures, to serve for the villagers. What we found when everyone arrived is that, it's not complete until the creators of so much of the nourishment we enjoy (i.e. food, beverages, goods and wares) come and make it feel like 'home.' Without adding their style, flair, and energy it would simply be a bunch of lonely stalls awaiting the family to come home... Thanks to all who came and played with us and with each other!
Something else we found was that it's incredibly difficult to photograph the 'bones' of a village in an effective manner to convey our side of the story... therefore, we hope you can spot the details in our work through the photo gallery attached here.
See you in April for Lucidity!
- the AAC crew