*notcot in travel , 20:32

GLOW: Santa Monica - Overview- 07.20.08

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I think i’ve waited 25 years for GLOW to happen - i love my beach towns, and Santa Monica is where i grew up, and the first ocean and beach i ever touched… and FINALLY, the City of Santa Monica let go of all their many rules for 12 precious hours (and we went, from 7pm to about 6:30am) - with an incredible first GLOW festival - the pier, with its new crazy uberbright-LED ferris wheel, the whole park overlooking PCH, the neighboring restaurants and shops, the beach, the work out rings and ropes - all packed with people of all sorts and all ages all night long… enjoying various music, techno/eco-art installations, and ultimately just each others company, and how nice it was to have all of this come together so beautifully and so playfully in Santa Monica. So before i get into the specific installations i have to show you video of… here’s an overview post to give you a feel of what an incredibly nice 12 hours it was… highlights are definitely lying on the beach listening to pirate lullabies at 3am, the interactive projection on a HUGE water spray, the computer fan driven upcycled electronic organisms under the pier, and watching people from such varying walks of life coming together for this Santa Monica first. (Oh and for really odd things, in the midst of all of this, we even ended up at Google for drinks, since the bars were just maddness - which led to a finger rocket war through the cubicles.)

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And as for those precious rules we grew up with… well tonight - there were tons of dogs running around, balls/frisbees/everything flying around, no lifeguards in the towers, i’m pretty sure people were dressing/undressing in their tents, definitely people camping and sleeping all over the beach to experience sunrise, while cleaner than expected, some areas got quite littered with trash, drinks were flowing - even in glass bottles, drum circles were popping up, loud music that “caused the neighbors to complain” late into the night, art you had to loiter to experience under the pier, random goodies for sale, a few cars on the beach, and i think we definitely saw some rascal type scooter things on the bike path…. and this sign forbidding it all right in front of the whole thing! We also saw the glass house hotboxed right behind a no smoking permitted sign… what a crazy 12 hours of Santa Monica amusement it was!

Also… if you want more pics, threw a bunch in the gallery - and will clean up some video to show you how some of the best installations worked too!


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14 Notes

yeah I was wondering if there was going to be a Glow Festival for the 2009. Let me know I want to work with y’all. Went to 08’ and loved it, Great energy.

----- Mark Johnsen 04.03.09 15:48

Worst. Event. Ever. Whoever put this together should be hung from their balls for wasting everyone’s time. whoever didn’t go to this, consider yourself extremely lucky.

----- Glow Sucks 06.08.08 16:20

This was such an accomplishment for the city, citizens, and all those who like to have a great summer night enjoying life and art.
As for the first, and great adventure, I hope it only gets bigger and better.
For those that didn’t like it, Glow up!

----- Vassago 28.07.08 22:54

This was a great idea that seemed short on execution but was overwhelmed by the response. And why exactly did the music stop so early? When it did, the whole event lost its center and it became scattered.

Kudos to a large but well behaved crowd and a downright bubbly police force that seemed to be enjoying the festival as much as the goers.

----- Marshall 27.07.08 23:43

sorry, but i feel that the whole thing, as an art event, was a dismal failure. i even overheard someone on their cell phone telling someone “well, from my perspective, it’s like really bad burning man art.” the turnout pretty much paralyzed the city from about 5:30 p onward. i couldn’t even get on the pier it was so overwhelmingly crowded. i guess if i wanted to do drugs all night long, it might have been ok, but that’s not what i went there for. i went for the art, and was sorely disappointed.

----- jeremy 27.07.08 12:18

I know from a person planning the event that the city was expecting 25,000 people, they ended up with 250,000! Yes, they ran out of programs. Yes, the vendors were overwhelmed. However, one has to keep in mind this was a first ever event. Next year (or when ever they decide to run it again), I suspect they’ll have a much better idea of what to expect.

----- Kerinia 23.07.08 15:31

I was pleasantly surprised by the huge turnout and the kindness of the crowd and the security forces.

However, it was long on attendance and too short on art. Perhaps it was spread too far apart and hard to find while navigating a huge crowd. And at night, it’s just too difficult to read the tiny markers on the map provided. I’m seeing a lot of photos of installations that I never found during the 4 hours I was there. How about adding a “glowing” trail from one thing to another? Some kind of marker or high-over-head navigation “glow.”

And please add vendors. A ton of them. There was nothing to eat and little to drink. Plus, I expected to find vendors with a myriad of glow sticks & wearable gear! Where were they? It would have been the perfect crowd interaction for even the human beings to glow!

Bummer the Grunions didn’t show.

One last thing- at 9:30 parking was $20 at Sears’ lot, by 1:30 the fee rose to $30. Both prices are outrageous. Parking lots and shuttles must be made clearer on a map that includes a schedule.

----- Eliz 21.07.08 17:19

Hello everyone! I tried to submit an installation to GLOW but they asked for too many things (essays, maps, plans, 3d sketches, etc, etc.) and I gave up. Three months later, the morning of the event, went to HomeDepot and bought 4 shovels, went to Pier 1 and got 400 candles and off we went to the site and builted 105 volcanoes on the sand! No permit, no glory and no name but a lot of people enjoyed it and that made me feel very good. Here are some pictures…
http://www.flickr.com/photos/juanideas/sets/72157606297925458

----- juanideas 21.07.08 16:16

Hey everyone ~ i totally agree ~ i tried not to be a downer in this post, b/c all in all, kudos to the city of santa monica for even getting this far along (they don’t even allow 24 hour anything west of 6th!)

But i did feel the art was a bit too limited and not well thought out ~ it clearly didn’t seem planned for the scale of an audience that appeared - so next year - yes, please, get the artists to have a bit more vision! (and bigger budgets?)

Also ~ food and drinks were insane to get ~ vendors would help! And where WAS the glow? I would have paid almost anything for more fun glowing goodies to help light up the space + bring the grunions out…

i assume this wasn’t really meant to be a coachella or burningman ~ no pilgrimages out to this one, more like a summer festival to bring out the locals? Can you imagine how hard the crowd control would get? this was free and had no bag checks, boundaries, anything… in fact the security and cops were SO nice and friendly every time i encountered them, it was actually really pleasant, and a great way to hang out and spend a summer’s night.

So anyhow ~ it certainly had its flaws, but also surprised me, and it will be interesting to see how this develops over the next few years! But with that turn out, and minimal “incidents”, i’m sure they must have considered it quite the success for an inaugural attempt at an all nighter in SM.

----- jean/NOTCOT 21.07.08 16:09

crazy! wish i was home for it.

----- rugenius 21.07.08 10:54

great idea, but could the art have been more accessible to the many thousands of people? An art piece that can be experienced 1 person at a time? really? Take a look at coachella/burningman for inspiration on how to get large scale work that the masses can enjoy. MORE MUSIC TOO!!

----- evan 21.07.08 10:40

Yes, there were some nice pieces, yes it was kind of pleasant - but you couldn’t get a drink for love nor money anywhere, nor food of any kind, and the Victoria’s Secret ‘Pink’ show on Thursday night had amazing computer-controlled searchlights which were removed for Glow. I thought it was pretty lame actually.

----- max 21.07.08 10:18

Great overview! There were a couple spectacular moments that night when everyone on the south side of pier started cheering out of pure glee. Got the moment on video here: http://www.vimeo.com/1376149 .
And some photos here: http://moneydick.com/wordpress/2008/07/20/glow-santa-monica-digital-aftermath/

----- Daniel 21.07.08 09:06

Killer coverage! This event was amazing. It really is rare that a large city by the beach will agree to stay open so late as to cater to artists and eccentrics all through the night. I just hope all the plastic got recycled. I hope it happens again next year except with more djs.

----- Brad 21.07.08 00:01

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