Originating as a small pop-up gathering in the living room of Alex Wisner's home, Alex Wisner, Charlsey Kellen, and Diana Mantis come together to bring forward a group of acts, LA artists, and local vendors in Treehouse Festival; the pop-up styled event located in Los Angeles.
Can you guys introduce yourselves to our readers?
Alex Wisner is the founder of Treehouse and singer/song writer/keyboardist in the band AKW. Charlsey Kellen is the founder of Dog-Eared Records, and Diana Mantis a music photographer who both co-hosts Treehouse Festival.
How did you guys decide you wanted to create a festival? How did you end up accomplishing that goal?
It’s funny but I never really had a festival in mind. Treehouse started in my living room a little over a year ago. I had asked a few friends to come over and share their art with me. I realized how intimate, inviting and thrilling it was to have such an attentive audience when it’s very rare to find such a venue these days so I made it a monthly event. The word spread so I created a website where submissions could happen. I started getting so many submissions that I ended up having to curate each month. This then outgrew my living room and I turned it into a pop-up style event around Los Angeles. We took over bigger houses in the Hollywood Hills, art galleries in downtown and Silverlake, the rooftop at the Hollywood tower and the list goes on. We expanded from just music and poetry into adding short films. It has become a monthly installment of a safe platform where all artists and audiences are welcome.
We held an event and 800 people reserved tickets. This led us to believe we should create a festival where these independent artist hiding in the nooks of Los Angeles should exposed. We took the idea and ran with it. It’s been three months (which we’ve learned is not nearly enough time) in the making. With the help of so many kind souls and random yet serendipitous meetings, we have secured the venue (the gorgeous Ambassador Auditorium), we have 30+ artists, 15 vendors, a slew of films and 30+ volunteers helping make this happen. We’re excited to see how this first one goes. We plan to do it every year. - Alex
What has been the greatest part of putting the festival together?
The greatest part of putting together Treehouse Festival has been seeing the amount of people who truly believe in supporting art, and community, even for artists they do not know. It’s really easy to get jaded in LA seeing the same bands play the same handful of venues over and over again, and get stuck in really clique-y different scenes and niches. But so many people have come out of the woodwork to help even if it’s not their “style” of music or art. It’s amazing. It is such an awesome feeling to be reminded that art matters and that people care. - Charlsey
You guys took some great pictures with the Lomo'Instant Wide already and we can't wait to see more from the festival. Can you tell us about your experience shooting with the camera?
Alex and I were basically jumping up and down as soon as the camera arrived. I decided to bring it out with us that night to a venue, we were going to see a band play that we wanted to check out for the festival. First of all while we were waiting for the band’s set, I figured out how to do the double-exposure on accident and was so excited that the first pack of film vanished before my eyes. Everywhere we went that night people kept stopping me asking about the camera and I would pull out all the polaroids I had taken and show them how to use it. I love the personal feel that a polaroid gives and its exactly how we feel about the Treehouse Festival. No matter how big our events have gotten, they always feel intimate and I think that’s part of what makes them special. We decided to have a lot of the artists come by Alex’s house so that we could do videos for them to show on the Treehouse LA Instagram and I love that we had the polaroid camera there to help document those moments that we will most certainly look back on. - Diana
When and where is the festival going to be?
The festival is going to be from 11:00am to midnight October 15th, 2016 at the Ambassador Auditorium in Pasadena, CA and we hope to see you there ;)
Get your hands on the Lomo'Instant Wide at the Lomography Online Store
Interested in getting to know the ladies of the Treehouse festival?
Check out Charlsey on her Website