Stab Magazine | Here's What You Missed From Dion Agius' Tasmanian Mini Festival

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Here’s What You Missed From Dion Agius’ Tasmanian Mini Festival

“I want to do a bigger version in summer and get someone who actually knows what the fuck they’re doing to help organise it this time!”

style // Sep 6, 2018
Words by Stab
Reading Time: 6 minutes

Dion tells us the one day shindig he and Nick Green (one of Stab’s most adored image takers) held on Sunday at his Tasmanian property was just a test drive for something bigger and better, but either way it appears the rest of us missed out on a groovy time.

There were projections, a photo exhibition, a zine release, live music, brisk, fresh Tasmanian air, fires in barrels—and a jacuzzi full of secrets!

Unfortunately Dion, the mastermind and host of the event (they’ve coined The River), found out the hard way that a good time does come with cost.

Everything didn’t go to plan, from ill prepared premieres to portaloo blowouts, frozen mixers (literally) and a yard full of garbage thanks to the neighbour’s inquisitive sheep herd.

Stab caught wind of the happening over the weekend, but couldn’t swindle the free time to join thanks to an approaching Texan expedition, so instead got Mr Agius on the line for a recount while he dealt with the aftermath.

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Free from sequens, diamantes, inappropriate indigenous headdresses and hyperactive jaws bones.

Dion! What’s happening man?

I’m in the midst of cleaning up all this garbage. Our neighbour’s sheep got into all the garbage bags from the party and just tore it open and spread it everywhere.

Everyone was such legends and did the best cleanup, it was all in these bags—and I just went out for a couple of hours, to drop Chippa back at the airport, came home and it was just strewn everywhere again.

I thought I got away with it Scott free, cos I actually slept through the cleanup, which was pretty awesome. But I guess I got my karma.

Oh damn, you’d be feeling that right now.

I’m pretty fucking torched, it’s been a big month.

So, tell me about this party? Where’d the idea come from?

When I first moved down here, the property I moved to, as soon as I got here I thought it was be the most insane spot to have a little mini music festival. It’s right on the river and there’s actually a hill across the river, the sound travels really good in this little valley where I am. It’s just so still and quiet at night.

We talked about it, Chippa’s been down a bunch, he actually has a house on the same street as me. He stayed down a couple of times and just fell in love with it so he ended up getting a little spot a couple of minutes from mine.

We always talked about how good it would be to have a little music festival so I kind of just decided a month ago, ‘fuck it, I’m just going to try do one and see how it goes.’

I think I bit off a bit more than I can chew. I hadn’t built anything yet, so I kind of had to build everything and organise everything simultaneously which nearly ended up bringing me to tears a couple of times.

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Lasca Dry warms up a cold Tasmanian evening.

Oh really? Tough times?

Yeah, well, I picked up Dave Fox from the airport and we hadn’t edited the movie that was supposed to be premiering. So we had a day to edit the film, he was pretty much on his laptop in the car from the airport trying to get it ready, while we were trying to think about how we were going to do it.

At the same time I had to pick up portaloos. Turns out the ones I ordered were in Hobart, which was three hours from where I was in Launceston.

So I ended up finding another one off this sketchy dude and picked that up, then I got about ten minutes from home and the fucking tyre blew off the thing, the axle pretty much snapped and we nearly crashed.

We just had to leave it. Yeah, at that point I was so close to breaking. But it ended up being sweet. Chip came down gave me a hand and bunch of friends came down and helped get us over the line.

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The afternoon scene.

So tell me about the event, what went down? 

Basically it was to have a little festival for the people around here, and the surf community around here. We premiered the new Globe film (Cult Of Freedom, NZ Part) , which I think might have been the world premiere.

I started work on a project here in Tasmania so I’ve been quietly chipping away at that, so had the first look at that, that’s what Dave and I were editing. Probably still want to work on that for a year or so. So we showed that and just had four music acts play, Buzz Kull, Puriant, Thom Pringle (aka Tiger Pearson) and a local girl from home called Lasca Dry.

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Candles, smoke machines, and Thom Pringle manning the beats.

Oh sick, I saw an Instagram Story with Buzz Kull playing – he looked rugged up and very frosty!

It actually got so cold that the mixer stopped working properly. It was getting down to zero at night. So the equipment got too cold halfway through Marc (Buzz Kull) and we had to stop.

Luckily, when Chip came down we got the angle grinder and cut a bunch of 44 gallon drums so there was a bunch of fire pits, so pretty much when the sun went down people huddled around them.

I also had a jacuzzi and that was a wild scene. I wasn’t hanging around there, but when I went past at one point there was about eight people in there, a bunch of nude people, looked pretty wild and weird.

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Thom Pringle, shrouded.

Oh wow. Sounds like a fantastic time.

Yeah and Triple J’s One Night Stand was in St Helens, which is super close to where I live so that’s why there was so many people around and in town, so we kind of threw it off the back of that.

Nick Green, he’s a mate of mine, he had a photo exhibit sort of thing. A bunch of his friends came down, he’s got a good group of friends. Also a guy called Max, who does a lot of film stuff, had a projection installation thing going as well on the night.

The core idea was to keep incorporating a lot of young artists from around here and more musicians from Tassy here as well, to try to start a little scene and have it loosley built around surf and skate

It was a good test run. I want to do a bigger version in summer and get someone who actually knows what the fuck they’re doing to help organise it this time [laughs].

It’s just a whole lot of things to do that I really am not qualified to do, a lot of odd jobs that you kind of forget about.

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The River!

Cool cool, what’s the plan from here?

Hopefully we’ll be able to bring something to the area, we don’t usually get anything like that around here, but it’s such a cool spot.

Might try and do a multi-day festival, let people camp on the property, swim in the river, go surf, skate – we’re building a skatepark, and yeah, just have a good time.

I’m picking up Dark Mofo vibes on this.

Dark Mofo was definitely the inspiration behind the whole thing but obviously one millionth the scale of that thing. That festival is probably my favourite thing in the whole world, a mini surf version of that would be so awesome. 

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Mr Chippa Wilson, on tools.

By the way, Dion informed us that he and Nick Green printed a limited run of 50 copies of their collaborative zine. Go right ahead and slide into Dion or Nick’s Instagram DMs to get yourself a copy.

ZINE SMALLER

Here’s a spread from their non-digital visual production.

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