A Trail Guide to Artfort 2017

Gertie the Galactic Archnid by Colossal Collective

Five years since its debut, Treefort Music Festival has at long last added an art category to its roster. You can’t claim it was lacking in visual pleasantries in the first place if you’ve ever been guided by the cheerful, wooden signage punctuating downtown Boise or had a poster screen printed on-demand at the merch table. This year, however, the forces of the Artist Alliance of Boise, the Colossal Collective, Swell Artist Collective and Sector Seventeen have reeled it in, finally formalizing the collective efforts of the Treasure Valley’s finest creatives.

Although only informally dubbed “Artfort” for now, its agenda is as eclectic as its tech, film and brew cohorts. But since none of the art events are on the official Treefort App’s schedule, we’ve rounded up the focal points for those wanting to take a more organized approach.

Treefort Art Gallery @ Owyhee Ground Floor
Friday March 24th 6-10pm
Saturday March 25th 6-10pm
Sunday March 26th 5-9pm

Adhering to the festival’s adage of discovery, Artfort’s home base will be donned by nearly a dozen regional artists such as the meta-mathematical Cody Rutty and an interactive installation by Betsy Hinze. Calligraphic muralist Jose “Prime” Reza was graciously sponsored by MING Studios to fly in from Los Angeles to contribute as well.

Catch Jose’s work not only at the gallery but also at Filmfort’s screening of Dark Progressivism, a documentary-style narrative of the dark, yet enterprising background of urban art, on Friday at 6:00pm on Owyhee’s 2nd Floor.

Jose "Prime" Reza at Treefort 2017
Jose “Prime” Reza, Mexican-American “Dark Progressivist” artist and Artfort special guest

The gallery was spearheaded by the Artist Alliance, a community organization seeking to revitalize the local art scene with pop-up galleries and large-scale works. Only founded a year ago by Tony Caprai and Miguel Delgado, the conceptual art duo will be revealing their first collaborative piece here.

Getting antsy? You can already peep Tony and Miguel’s smaller works currently outlining the Owyhee lobby.

Jungo Blizzard by The Colossal Collective
The imagineering of Jungo Blizzard by The Colossal Collective

Jungo Blizzard @ ¿Omnipresent?

Nomadic and neon, a mega-gorilla will apparently be wandering the grounds of Treefort throughout the week. The appropriately named Colossal Collective brought us Gertie the Galactic Arachnid last year, who seemed privy to the tunes of Youth Lagoon and TV on the Radio.

The crafty puppeteers are currently fundraising to cover their expenses. If you wish to feast your eyes on Jungo (before he feasts on you), we encourage you to grab some of their merch or simply donate via Paypal.

*** WARNING: We could not obtain confirmation whether or not Jungo is aggressive. Proceed to shuffle, jig and twerk around him with caution. ***

Sector Seventeen @ Grove St. near the Modern Hotel
Friday March 24th – Sunday March 26th during daylight

Beloved local muralists Sector Seventeen, who have (legally) made their mark on Freak Alley Gallery, Table Rock and the new City Center Plaza, have been tasked with live-painting an 8’x40’ wall while we sip on limited-edition ales only one block east of their canvas. So go pay your respects and check out the progress throughout the fest.

Swell Artist Collective @ Alefort
Friday March 24th 3-8pm
Saturday March 25th 12-8pm
Sunday March 26th 12-8pm

As busy of a week as Treefort is, it’s exceptionally important to feed on the fruit of artists and artisans. What if it were possible to consume both at the same damn time?

In collaboration with Bittercreek Alehouse, the brains (and palettes) behind Swell Artist Collective will be flaunting a beer-themed installation at the Alefort tent. If you haven’t caught one of their themed galleries yet, most recently a bestial show to benefit wildlife documentarians Eyes on Conservation, you’re in for a visual treat.

Nineteen of their members have also designed 3’ x 3’ banners which will be on sale for a limited edition print run of 25 of each. Banners can be found at both Alefort proper and the Swell website while supplies last.