Music is definitely the main attraction at KAABOO, but the visual art exhibit inside the annual festival at the Del Mar Fairgrounds has quietly grown to become a big deal, too.
“There’s nothing else like it here,” said Jason Gould, who owns an art supply shop and gallery in North Park and has rented booth space at the KAABOO art fair for the last two years. “The organizers are taking the art seriously and trying to get reputable galleries and artists into the mix, and they are really carefully curating it.”
The fest, which launched in 2015, has focused on gourmet food, craft beer and other amenities outside of just music – it’s the current music fest trend and what event organizers have to do if they want to stand out and survive. But KAABOO, like Coachella, has taken the art element a step beyond most music festivals that try to include art. The event includes a mix of live murals and public art installations, plus a contemporary art fair.
From Sept. 15-17, big-name visual artists like Brazilian duo Bicicleta sem Freio and Los Angeles artist Erin Yoshi will be at KAABOO alongside the likes of Weezer and Alanis Morissette. Some San Diego’s artists will be there, too: Carly Ealey, Spenser Little, Gloria Muriel, Melissa Walter, Michael Carini and others.
San Francisco muralist Amandalynn is the festival’s art director. She said this year she’s hired about 20 muralists and installation artists from around the world, and the art fair will include over 100 artists and several galleries.
“We just keep expanding every year,” Amandalynn said. “The whole event was started with the idea that the art would have as important of a platform as the music. It’s a definitely an integral part of the whole experience.”