Photographs and words by Adrian Samano
Day For Night festival has done it again. They have harmoniously brought art, music, and people together for one hell of an experience. People from all over the globe came together at the abandoned Barbara Jordan Post Office in Houston, TX for a beautiful collision of light and sound.
Day For Night switched venues this year from the Silver Street Studios to the Barbara Jordan Post Office, an abandoned complex with over 1.5 million square feet of space. The post office was a great choice to host the art instillations and blue stage, it had a very old industrial vibe that fit the tone of the instillations as well as the variety of different electronic sets that were going on inside.
We kicked off Friday night with Bjork’s interesting DJ set on the blue stage. I stuck around for a while but my curiosity about the art instillations got the best of me. I headed upstairs and the first thing that drew me in was Damien Echols’ Crimson Lotus work. When I showed up, there was only one man there sitting directly in the center of the instillation. I was deeply drawn into the symbols and found myself frozen there for a few minutes, letting it all sink in.
I moved on to the instillation next door, Octa by Limb and completely missed Musica Universalis. I thought the sign for the UVA instillation was for the Octa piece so I never got the chance to view it due to the overwhelmingly long wait over the next couple of days. Octals instillation made me feel as if I had just stepped into a hybrid film between Nicolas Winding Refn and David Lynch, whom of which are two of my favorite Directors. The menacing, pulsating red lights above with electro music transitioning into a hard contrasting blue made for interesting character development.
Day For Night has continued to excel in the festival circuit and shows no sign of slowing down. As with every new beginning, there is need for some improvement. My experience this year was fantastic but, there were some shortcomings. The restrooms and water stations were a bit of a struggle this year. Sometimes it could take up to 20 minutes to get into a porta potty because it seemed as if there were too few for how many attendees there were. I believe restrooms and water are two essentials every festival must have plenty of.
I was also really excited to view the Bjork Digital instillation but the wait was too long for me. I understand how difficult it can be to run a one and a half hour long viewing to thousands of attendees so I’m not too salty about it, there were plenty of other art and artists to enjoy.
The Apex Twin set was everything we had hoped for. Massive screens lit up with unique and interesting graphics, Apex swooned the city of Houston track after track. During the set, it began to drizzle and that drizzle turned into hard rain and a very steep drop in temperature. I packed up my gear, danced along with the crowd in the freezing rain and it was all worth it.
My personal favorite moment of this years festival was the Welcome To Houston performance. I had been talking about Day For Night festival all year long and when it was announced that the Houston legends would all be performing, I was more than ecstatic. As a Houston native myself, I grew up listening to these rappers and I would have never thought that I’d get the opportunity to photograph them, especially all in one day! I was grateful to be able to go backstage and meet the different artists as well as get polaroids of most of them. To hear Z-Ro perform the Houston anthem “Mo City Don” live and in the flesh was one experience I’ll never forget. Day For Night made my Christmas come early this year.
Overall, Day For Night was a huge success. It’s the one festival I have looked forward to all year since Day For Night 2015. Albeit there were some discrepancies and confusion but they are bound to happen anytime you are in a new environment. Day For Night has proven that they love their city and are here to stay, I can’t wait to see your lovely faces next year.
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For a full detailed lineup and experience of this years festival, head here