Often, the daily routine of the material grind we’re habitually forced into can leave us uninspired, deprived of all that is colorful and creative in this world. But Ryan Hickey and Adam Crockett, both driven by their passion for the arts, were eager to find a way to rekindle that imaginative, visionary essence burning in us all.
Launched in 2002, ORANJE developed into one of the more prominent art-and-music events in Indianapolis, helping to showcase the city’s vibrant cultural talent. This year, the festival’s 14th and final event took place at the Bottleworks development at the historic Coca-Cola Bottling Plant along Mass Ave. Igniting an explosion of bright light and creative energy along the rustic brick-walled building, a blend of 22 artists and 19 musicians performed in a melting pot of interactive and creative experiences for the hundreds of patrons who set foot into the innovative atmosphere. There was even a surprise wedding, with event organizers Rachel Rubenstein and Ryan Hickey exchanging vows onstage at the start of the night.
Here, we offer you a selection of our favorite things witnessed at Oranje:
An array of abstract shapes and faces morphed into the image of distortion on white paper. Katie Norman, architect behind these exotic pieces, drew inspiration from social media. Norman wanted to portray an element of chaos that occurs when one tries so desperately to be seen, to fit in.
Norman says that image is all too often unauthentic.
Her art can be found on display at the Indianapolis Art Center. It’s available for purchase at katielnorman.com.
Quincy Owens is known to his family and friends as “the creator.” Often, they would hand over magazines, books, paper, wood scraps, and just about anything else that had already served its purpose in one form.
After years of collection, the unused scraps began to pile up. Owens decided he needed to do something with it. He evolved their form, spawning something new from the dissected parts of the old.
Owens took bits and pieces of the magazines, books, and wood scraps and fused them together into a usable work of art—coasters.
Here at ORANJE, Owens invented a way for passersby to interact with the art, paying a small fee to toss a ping-pong ball into a glass cup in exchange for a coaster.
Quincy Owens coasters, along with various other forms of his art, are available for purchase at quincyowensart.com.
Poetry on Demand
In one corner of the historic brick building, an orchestra of fingers pitter-pattered along typewriters in a rhythmic rush.
By request of event participators, a handful of poets put themselves to the task of constructing words into the pattern of a poem in 15 minutes max. Each request involved its own unique complexity—a backstory of love, loss, friendship, and all life situations that could easily merit the production of a poem.
Tony Brewer, creator of Poetry on Demand grew an obsession with typewriters that traces back decades. He first began collecting in the 90’s. After having stumbled upon a poetry booth in New Orleans, Brewer was inspired to create one himself.
Poetry on Demand debuted at 4th Street Festivals of the Arts and Crafts in Bloomington, where it continues to be a hotspot for attendees each year.
The world contorted into a 3D pop-culture inspired burst of bright lights, colors, and geometrical shapes for all passersby who dared to slip on the virtual reality goggles.
Creator, Asasan Kayyod dropped users into his interactive art piece, GRT2. Kayyod developed the game in Unity, a free 3D video game-building software.
Kayyod wanted users to get the sense of a meditative dream state when stepping into his virtual realm. Growing up playing video games and attending college for a degree in video art, Kayyod wished to capture the vibe he feels each time he sinks into the virtual world of gaming.
Organic interplays of chiming, exotic, distorted sounds blended into soft, calming beats. Bangs Nicely serves a flavorful concoction for all minds to absorb.
Bangs Nicely wishes to take listeners on a trip into the depths of the universe, using the “sonic palette of every day urban life to spawn a theatrical score of thoughtful downtempo bass music.”
Bangs Nicely’s music can be found at www.bangsnicely.com.
DJ Gabby Love
Indianapolis based, DJ Gabby Love, known for her artful mixing of genres, has blossomed into “one of the most sought after DJs” for clubs and events in Indianapolis.
DJ Gabby Love’s groovy, jibing beats has landed her opening sets for Salt-N-Pepa, Nelly, Diplo, and various other prominent names in the musical industry.
Drawing inspiration from her grandmother, a musical prodigy, playing both the violin and piano around the world, DJ Gabby Love has cultivated a deep passion for music since a young age.
Cousins Luke and John Tuttle teamed together to curate an electro-pop duo that has found its way in the top songs on Spotify’s Global Viral 50 chart.
A merging of quick tempo and seamless EDM pop-inspired sounds, pairing nicely with Luke and John’s soft vocals, flow into the ears of avid fans. Currently, Dream Chief pulls in over 10,000 monthly listeners.
Dream Chief’s music can be found on Spotify and at www.dreamchief.com.
From sounds influenced by EDM, Action Jackson designs a fast-paced tempo in his musical creations, incorporating natural sounds as rhythmic cadence.
An example of this union can be found in his song titled “Swish,” which begins with a clever use of repetitive “swooshing” sounds of a basketball going into a hoop, transforming into a musical beat—much like the orphan, Evan, in the film August Rush, who morphs an orchestra of natural sound into a work of musical genius.
Action Jackson’s music can be found at www.djjackson.com.