If you’re looking to immerse yourself in a place where nature and culture meet in wild abandon and the music never stops, the massive outdoor music and arts festival Osheaga has you covered. On top of that, Osheaga amps up its oft-overshadowed Arts component during the month of July by inviting Montreal favourite Kid Koala to install his immersive audio-visual creation, Space Cadet, in the Biosphere. Has there ever been a better pairing of artist and venue?
Ninja Tune artist and Montrealer Kid Koala is a prime example of the kind of multi-disciplinary creativity not uncommon in this city – he’s a musician, a DJ, an artist, a writer, an event organizer, an all-around cool guy, and Space Cadet reflects that. Coming to Osheaga in the week before acts such as The Flaming Lips, Broken Social Scene, Eminem, Elvis Costello and, oh, about 70 more bands get set to blow our minds, the Space Cadet Headphone Tour, part of Osheaga Arts, sets the tone for a friendly, fun time. But instead of music blasting from speaker stacks a mile high to a crowd of festival goers, all the sound comes through individual headphones as the audience lays back and relaxes in inflatable “space pods.”
As we recline in the awesome environment of architect Buckminster Fuller’s Biosphere, Kid Koala creates a new sonic storytelling environment using turntables, a piano and more. Experimental lighting artist Travis Flint adds an awing visual dimension to the music and singer-songwriter Terence Bernardo also performs a set. A Space Cadet Gallery accompanies the show, with installations, an “interactive Music Spaceship Console,” a Space Cadet Soundtrack Cassette Jukebox, and original etchboards from the Space Cadet graphic novel. And there will be cookies, to decorate an to eat. Which all sounds like the perfect arty evening out on the town, er, in the park, to me.
In addition to Kid Koala’s shows, Osheaga Arts features an exhibition by photographer Susan Moss, who’s made a name for herself capturing the action at all kinds events around town, from rock shows to roller derby. Her photos are up at Usine C (1345 Lalonde Ave.) starting July 21. And poster art has its day in Music on Paper, an international exposition of 15 silk-screen artists known for finding just the right images to represent bands in poster form – the show opens July 6 at 4220 du Saint-Jean Baptiste (4220 Drolet).
Osheaga Arts, July 6–31.