Arcadia are coming home to Glastonbury to lay down even deeper roots and will have their own field to forge their unique matrix of mechanical lunacy for years to come.
When Pip and Bert first dreamed up the concept of Arcadia over a cider or six, it was at Worthy Farm that the idea really took shape. Setting off on a nomadic journey across the frontlines of global scrap, Arcadia sought to transform abandoned military hardware into environments that celebrate the human spirit.
With a trusty Bristolian crew welding together an ethos of recycling, flaming explosions, sculpture, architecture, adrenaline, immersion and the intangible spark of magic only the crowd can bring, the momentum soon became breakneck.
Arcadia may be far more than the sum of its parts, but every one of those elements has its own story – from spy plane engines to helicopter blades. It has always been about reworking the refuse of exploitation to harness a primal unity.
The Spider is back on the rampage at the heart of Arcadia with a heaving DJ line-up, the Glastonbury Landing show and a new finale. This year also sees a wave of new additions to the landscape with Glastonbury’s own Mechanical Playground, which comes to life at 17:00 each day.
Hand of Man is a 26-foot long mechanical hand and forearm built by Christian Ristow, which is capable of picking up cars, crushing them, and slapping down the Spider if he gets unruly. Operated by a cyborg style glove, it’s completely interactive and open to the public to have a crack at controlling it.
Paka and his robotic dragon will be firmly on patrol throughout, breathing fire as they roll past shards of experimental Tesla electricity. Spitfire Forge will be hotwiring the night with caged pulse jets that blur the lines between sculpture and synthesisier. Itchy Gorilla will be back and whipping up a storm with the Fire Tornado, while the Bug Stage (built from submarine moulds) takes the party mobile on 6 wheels of all terrain rave.
There will also be an installation dedicated to the charity ‘Alive and Well’ – a cause close to the crew.
Attempts to go ‘organic’ by capturing the methane output of Michael’s cows are still in the developmental stage, but the biogas flame cannon is well on its way.
After crash landing and unleashing full spectrum chaos in different corners of the festival over the last five years, Arcadia have found their new home, a new permanence by The Park and a new wave of energy and creativity is igniting for 2014.
It’s all kicking off far earlier this year too, so head down well before sunset.