Tenth Annual Art Outside: 2014 [Review]
For one weekend (October 24-27th) Art Outside 2014 transformed Apache Pass into a wonderland of music, art and workshops galore. This was the tenth annual Art Outside and it was absolutely a weekend that will not soon be forgotten by those who experienced it. It’s hard to describe the feeling one gets when they arrive at a place like Art Outside – the nostalgia, the wonder, the excitement – there is an energy in the air that exists nowhere else I have ever been yet on this planet. It does not feel like you are simply entering the site of a music and arts festival – it feels more like you are arriving home. I have been to many festivals but Art Outside has, and likely always will be, my favorite for many reasons – mainly being the feeling and sense of comfort, love, and acceptance you feel when you are in the presence of so many like-minded people. The production quality of the festival this year was also unreal; between the incredible art, the funky fun music, and the amazing workshops I feel that they really outdid themselves this year.
As the name suggests, Art Outside is full of art – seriously, there is art everywhere. From the moment you walk on the grounds of Apache Pass you are greeted by beautiful things to see, touch and interact with. One of my favorite places on the grounds was definitely the Art Gallery which was filled to the brim with absolutely gorgeous works of art. Everywhere you look there are people admiring art, creating art, feeling art – it is a beautiful thing. Art stirs something deep within us and lets us all connect on a deeper level while also expanding our consciousness of another’s mind. An amazing aspect of the art was the live painters. It is incredible to watch the transformation of an art piece over the weekend. It’s a rare chance to see the thought and movement that goes into such amazing pieces of art.There is no set definition or style of art at the festival – there were art vehicles, sculptures, robots, clothing – anything you could imagine, anything that makes you think. You could lay in the grass listening to wonderful music while an artist adorns your body with a beautiful henna tattoo or bring your kids over to get their face painted like a fairy – the options were plentiful. You could also purchase artwork to bring back home directly from the artists themselves in one of the many booths, tents or live painting work spaces. I could go on and on about the art all day but lets move on to the music.
The music lineup at this year’s Art Outside was incredible. With headliners such as The Polish Ambassador, Emancipator, Conspirator, The Motet, Random Rab, Papadosia, the list goes on and on. At almost any time of day you could find a stage with music going, even throughout the night on till morning. Friday night was solid, with a favorite of mine – The Polish Ambassador getting everyone funky and feeling ready for the weekend. Saturday was jam-packed with music all day long. There were so many varieties of music, ranging from local blue-grass to funky soul all the way to heavy bass. It’s always so great dancing and connecting with so many other people on the dance floor, especially in such a beautiful place. One of the most memorable sets for me personally was the sunrise Desert Dwellers set. It was in the wee hours of the morning, still dark when they began the set and ending after the sun had fully risen. The crowd had been going strong all night at the Dome Stage and they didn’t stop until groovin’ until the sun came up. There is something very special about a festival sunrise and it was incredible experiencing it with everyone there. Aside from the art and music there were also lots of awesome workshops!
The workshops ranged from wire wrapping to beginner poi and lots of things in-between. You could wake up with a yoga class then head on over to the tea lounge for a morning beverage. With so many knowledgeable teachers of so many trades, you could learn volumes in such a short amount of time. There were so many ways to get involved and meet others, while also learning about yourself in the process. I believe the workshops really add to the atmosphere of learning and growth and continue making Art Outside a festival unlike any others.
As if the art, music, and workshops weren’t enough there were also live performances, merchandise booths, food & drink vendors, amazing campsites, incredible people and so much more. Art Outside is truly a one-of-a-kind event that must be experienced to be fully understood. There is no way to adequately describe it in a way that does it justice but I hope I at least gave you an idea of what an amazing, inspirational and uplifting festival this is. If you haven’t yet, be sure to check out our full photo gallery here. I hope to see you next year at Art Outside 2015!