Green Days

Travel + Leisure Southeast Asia - - / CULTURE / - BY

A festival in Thailand makes carbon credits music to your ears.

IT WAS ONLY A MATTER of time before cryptocurrency hit the music festival scene; devotees of both fancy themselves a little bit subversive and a lot cutting edge. Wonderfruit, Thailand’s super-eco arts and living festival, is heading into its fourth iteration this December with headliners Roots Manuva, the British hip-hop star, and techno DJ Richie Hawtin—as well as a sci-fi plan to pay some of its artists and collaborators in TREEs, a digital token that represents one mangrove tree on one square meter in Burma’s Thor Heyerdahl Climate Park, backed by carbon credits that will be shared by the surrounding villages. Part of a long-term effort to repair Burma’s extensive deforestation, this plan will build exponentially upon the 10,000 trees planted JENINNE LEE-ST. JOHN there after the last festival using proceeds from drinks sales—which made the entire event carbon neutral.

Following up on the stage made of rice husks that was afterwards donated to local communities, the sustainable sculptures this year promise to make the festival feel like a post-apocalypse new-worldfrom-the-ashes movie set: a massive serpent, honeycombshaped and made of pliable wood, that Thai artist Punyisa Silparassamee modeled on Chinese dragon paper toys, will snake across the grounds for guests to reconfigure and play with; and Filipino artist Leeroy New will use found objects and natural materials to create giant biomorphic structures that festival-goers can climb upon, and smaller ones that performers will strut around in. In-between gong baths and gourmet meals (see: Morimoto), listen to talks by green heroes such as Bea Johnson, who will hold forth on how her family produces a mere half-liter of trash a year. Have a drink, plant a tree, tame a dragon: sounds like a wonderfully subversive way to rock out. December 14–17 in Chonburi, Thailand; wonderfruitfestival. com; adult four-day passes from Bt5,000.

Hong Kong's artistic ambitions will soar to new heights with the opening of

H Queen’s in the heart of Central, the first dedicated art tower in the city of skyscrapers. Designed by local firm CL3, the elegant, 24-floor glass tower sports high ceilings, spacious open floor plans, and a gondola-style lift to hoist large installations. The brainchild of architect William Lim, H Queen's is nearing completion along Queen's Road with galleries offering sweeping downtown views and large terraces for special events. With the annual Art Basel in March, and a crowded arts calendar, Hong Kong is on the map as a leading Asian creative center. Southeast Asia's finest film festival screens every December in the unlikely location of Luang Prabang, a World Heritage Site claiming scores of temples but not a single cinema. Directors and film buffs from around the region flock here for talks, workshops and non-stop movies, many screened open-air in the town's main square. Entries are recommended by film experts in each country in Southeast Asia, and the program is packed with special events, like director talks, panels, and, this year, a rare showing of Santi-Vina, the recently restored 1954 classic Thai film. December 8–13 in

Luang Prabang, Laos; lpfilmfest. org; all films and events are free.


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