This year marked the sixth version of FORM Arcosanti festival, a small sized but full scale music, arts and culture festival set in the tiny architectural project / ecological friendly village known as Arcosanti, Arizona. Set on a remote area of land 50 miles north of Phoenix, it’s the brain child of architectural genius Paolo Soleri who started building this project a long time ago as a way to bring change to the way humans work within nature and live and thrive in our natural environment. The entire vibe, if I were to summarize it briefly, is that if a city must exist and take “form,” then inherently it needs to work with the environment it’s built around and have a sustainable “function.”
This location created a foundation for this unique, highly curated and ultimately well-delivered brain-child of Hundred Waters. And it’s officially a festival we’ll now be watching closely over the next few years, so much so that I plan on booking again next year without even seeing the lineup first. That’s really how amazing it was.
I’m sure it helps that it was remarkably intimate, capped at around 2,000 people max, and even though some of the artists that played weren’t huge yet, major names like Florence + the Machine, Skrillex and Anderson .Paak were all there and went on to play shows in arenas like Red Rocks and Madison Square Garden. Knowing that we had a chance to see major artists like this up close will forever be a draw on this festival in the future, and something to pay close attention to. I also have no doubt that the artists we saw at the bottom of the bills will go onto be bigger household names, so it’s good I had one last chance to see Khruangbin in a small spot before they grow even bigger.
My friend Justin Yee and I attended this year’s festival both as newbies, and he took all of the photos you’ll see below and we both came away totally floored by what we saw, felt, witnessed and experienced.
Scroll down for our photo diary from the entire weekend…
DAY ONE | Friday May 10th, 2019
When you arrive at Arcosanti, the village itself is only accessible via a rocky dirt road so the festival puts a big parking lot near the highway and shuttles passengers back and forth between the main complex itself (and the camping area) and a parking lot about a mile away. Once fans were done setting up their camps and getting familiar with the complex, the music got started in the Vault area.
We were able to catch artists like MorMor, American Football, Melanie Faye, Japanese Breakfast, Christopher Willits, Tim Hecker (w/ Konoyo ensemble), Florence + The Machine and Peggy Gou to close the day.
MorMor was the first music of the day and kicked off in the Vaults area.
After hauling all of our camping gear and finally settling in, our crew was ready to see MorMor and do LessLess.
Crowd vibes were chill af all weekend. Everyone could be themselves.
The Vaults part of the complex was the perfect layout for more of the electronic or louder elements that were at the festival.
Melanie Faye admiring Vaults from the stage.
Crowd was shredded after that.
The view from the shredded crowd
Quick stop back at camp! Cheers!
View from the camping area back up at the village
Happy to be here
Japanese Breakfast kicked off in the Amp with a sublime “Diving Woman” and got the crowd up and moving, but sadly it was short lived due to sound issues. They made due by delivering acoustic songs from the center of the crowd.
Day One Spirit Animal 🦁
Florence + the Machine headlined the main day one of the festival in the Amp and brought her haunting vocals and beautiful songs, including “Jenny Of Oldstones” which was created for the final season of Game of Thrones. She dedicated the song to “Arya Stark…who saved us all,” and was joined by Kelsey Lu.
She brought her undeniable elegance…
…and then a well delivered release of transcendence!
Crowd vibe = Catharsis 🙌🏻
Peggy Gou was the first DJ up in Vaults after the chill-inducing Florence + the Machine set, and honestly a perfect end to the day.
FORM lights served as your functional guide posts back to camp…