Images by: Jill Ashley
Words by: B. Getz
Videos by: Elana Meta, Fabian Productions and deleFOCO
Audio by: LostInSound
Envision Festival :: 2.20.14 - 2.23.14 :: Rancho La Merced ::
Uvita, Costa Rica
Check out B. Getz's recap beneath Jill's gallery!
Deep in an imposing, grandiose jungle in Uvita, Costa Rica, 3500 ambassadors of love and
truth trekked from across the
globe and gathered for Envision Festival’s fourth annual celebration. Art took
center stage, and sewed the
common thread, as a plethora of creativity swelled from this carnival of unpredictable and
astonishing; all broadcast live
and direct through Funktion One soundsystems. Envisionaries came together as a global,
evolving, progressive, and
inspired psychedelic tribe; the entire escapade was nothing short of life affirming.
By day, we immersed an abundance of workshops that focused on meditation, spirituality,
sustainability and individualism through art. Visionary artists, like the astounding
Autumn Skye, were painting
everything and everywhere. Many surfed a quality wave on the picturesque beach just steps
away, and hundreds
congregated there for sunsets every day. Envision offered a variety of yoga practices and
movement art, like Envision
co-founder Sofia Thom of Danyasa, and the Sonic Butterfly experience with Andrea Brooks.
The strong undercurrent of
sustainability and permaculture ran throughout the festival’s consciousness, discussed
with proficient leaders like
Envision co-founder Stephen Books and David “The Polish Ambassador” Sugalski. Each
evening music stages would
host different dance troupes like Costa Rica fire krewe Pyro Danza or the Metamorphosis
Ballet. The Flash Mob that
took place during Elana Meta’s “Breaking Waves” hip-hop dance workshop is already the
stuff of legend.
Amidst the mass possibilities of artistic, cultural and inventive forms of expression
that can be found at Envision
Festival, the heartbeat is the music. Despite being pegged as an electronic music
festival, the event boasts a veritable
smorgasbord of progressive artists that runs the gamut from acoustic to electronic, reggae
to folk, dark to bright and
all points between. An ebb and flow from stage to stage, from within the tent cities,
bazaars and tea rooms, exquisite
beaches and bamboo temples. But if sacred-bass progressive electronic dance marathons are
your thing, how about
Boruca-mask inspired stage with dragon DJ pit that breathes fire?
It’s tremendously difficult to reel off musical highlights in a recap like this,
however a handful of artists really
gleamed in jungle glow. Thursday, things kicked off on the Lotus Stage with divergent sets
from Los Angeles’s Geno
Cochino and Far East-tinged bhangra crunk from WALA. Living Light opened
the Luna Stage
soundscapes lush in atmospherics. The staggeringly talented Plantrae entered new
realms of empathy, by way of
violin melodies drenched in wobbling bass. Kaminanda provided his patented tribal
a kaleidoscope of
consciousness through sacred bass gymnastics.
Friday, The Human Experience’s unique and sensual tones brought the sun down at the
Stage, before Nahko and
Medicine for the People’s acoustic communion of souls. Nahko Bear electrified
and minds of Envisionaries of
all stripes and styles with several mammoth appearances. Another fixture of the festival,
The Polish Ambassador, did
more than just move the Luna Stage dancefloor, he downright engulfed Envision en fuego!
With the help of Ayla Nereo
(who performed a Wildlight set as well as solo) and visuals professor Liminus; Jumpsuits
were representing rather
diplomatically in the jungle! Kayla Scintilla’s stimulating and expansive trek
dawn of a new day was a divine
journey deep in the annals of soulful bass music.
Saturday at the Sol Stage, a seven-hour chunk saw an eclectic and inspiring run of artists
bless the Envision massive.
The histrionics began with SF hip-hop collective The Fugineers, before the majestic
royal Rising Appalachia riveted
the now jubilant audience. Next up was the masterful reggae vibes of Rootz
before a two-hour opus from
one of the festival’s newest additions, Papadosio. The Ohio band profoundly
the Envision vibrations.
Immediately following this run was another, very different but equally stimulating
progression on the Luna Stage.
PhuturePrimitive, Tipper and Andreilien all delivered impassioned
sets of original
electronic music, the avant garde was
on display, mixing within the mouth of a Boruca dragon. As the sun rose, the inimitable
Random Rab led a proverbial
séance; the crowd rejoiced in a gigantic group hug and pronounced Zen aerobics.
Sunday, we held our breath til just after dusk for Soul Visions, an otherworldly
collaboration between Rising Appalachia
and The Human Experience. Beyond the “Dirty Filthy South”, it felt like we were mainlining
secrets to a sensual and
spiritual universe. A relentless session of deep house and tech high-steppin’ was helmed
by the lovely Kilma Temple,
before David Block’s alter ego Cat’s Pajamas absolutely destroyed the Lotus Stage
with psychedelic, minimalist,
shamanic house. Australia’s WhiteBear moved the goalposts for this post-dubstep
frightening and enveloping
stomp through bass netherworlds.
Sunrise with Tipper at the Luna Stage served as closing ceremony, and yet another one-of-
a-kind jungle journey. The
British legend unveiled a different style, definitively downtempo; a unique synthesis of
classical and electronic
dreamscapes, seamlessly scratched into the intoxicating environs. It was a fitting sonic
tribute to a gathering that defied
the odds and the Envisionaries that soar in the face of Babylon.
From where I danced, the focused mission was clear: to honor the people, their collective
inspiration, consciousness and
the spirit of collaboration at the core of Envision. We rallied around a common
understanding, based on the most basic
and endearing tenets of humankind: community and togetherness - a state of being that
no barriers, artistic,
linguistic nor cultural.
JamBase | Envision Jungle Fest
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