Feature Image: Main Stage at Strawberry Fields. This structure was originally conceptualised and designed by Billy @ Strawberry Fields and was was rigged By Spyda from Starburst Creations. Tetrik Structures managed all fabric construction and setup. Feature Image Credit: Matt Jones.
Tetrik is a multi-faceted project specialising in boundary pushing apparel design and tensile structure creation.
The project combines Aidan Beyer’s Tetrik Structures, specialists in the creation of temporary festival canopies, and Tetrik apparel, a designer ‘future-fashion’ clothing label from Aidan and co-designer/creator Kim Little a.k.a. HNYMLK.
With a number of huge canopy projects already under his belt, including creations at Boom in Portugal and Strawberry Fields here in Aus, we recently caught up with Aidan for a Q&A session to find out what inspires him, what it takes to build these mega structures, and what we can expect from both Tetrik Structures and Tetrik apparel in 2017.
Q. Hi Aidan! Firstly, in your own words, can you tell our readers exactly what Tetrik is?
A. Tetrik is a multilayered creative project that includes clothing and jewellery design as well as temporary fabric structures and stage design. Our aesthetic is dark, minimal and future focused.
Q. When did Tetrik start and how did you evolve from a local clothing brand to an international festival stage canopy designer?
A. Tetrik has existed in its true form for around 2 years but the designs and projects you are seeing are the accumulation of a lifetime of learning and developing. I have been really lucky to have had some incredible opportunities become available to me and I have tried to embrace them fully!
Q. Your clothing designs are very unique, what would you say your main design influences are?
A. Thanks! We are heavily inspired by dark, minimal, geometric design. I spend a lot time looking at very simple geometric tessellation’s and patterns. Architecture is also a big one for me. The canopies and clothes both have strong roots in architecture. Grey scale colour schemes have been really appealing to me recently also, there are so many tones of grey… they are all so pretty!
Q. You currently live in Northcote. How has living in Melbourne’s north influenced your work?
Moving to Melbourne 5 years ago was probably one of the biggest creative motivators of my life. After living all over Australia and spending the majority of my time around Perth for the previous years it was incredibly inspiring to move here. I have always lived Northside in Melbourne which I suppose is a bit of a cliché, but I do love it here and definitely have the creative communities I have found here to thank for a lot of the inspiration that drives me.
Q. Over the last 12 – 15 months, Tetrik Structures seems to have exploded. From being part of the team that built the Dance Temple at Boom Festival in Portugal, to the main stage at Rainbow Serpent here in Victoria, you have managed to secure some major projects at some huge international events. How have you managed to secure such fantastic gigs?
A. I have been really lucky to be part of the crew that managed the fabric for the Dance Temple at Boom in 2016. This was a mega opportunity that has opened a lot of doors for me. I guess it’s a bit of being in the right place at the right time mixed with a whole lot of hard work, perseverance and drive to be innovative in design and construction. For the 2017 edition of Rainbow Serpent I have collaborated with Jessica Lee from KWALIA to create the main stage canopy. I am so excited to put this up- as I am writing this we are sewing the final seams.
Q. Is it safe to say you have pretty much nailed doof structure design, or is there always more to learn?
A. There is always more to learn with this stuff. Unlike other building styles, there is no hard rule book for creating tensile structures. I am always looking to innovate and evolve, and festivals is where I want that to happen.
Q. Your structure at last year’s Yemaya festival used 300 meters of material, and for the main stage at Strawberry Fields this year you used 500 meters. How long do these mega structures take you to complete?
A. These projects require huge amounts of everything; huge amounts of fabric, space, time, work, thread, cutting and a really big table! It is hard to put any firm figures on it but to put it in perspective, the main stage project I am working on for Rainbow equates to around 1000 contact hours.
Q. What has been your biggest structure to date?
A. They keep getting larger every time! Strawberry Fields main stage was a huge project at 55 metres x 55 metres and 12 metres high, which was monstrous.
Now with some of these new projects that is beginning to seem small. I don’t want to give too much away but the main stage canopy for Rainbow Serpent this year is going to be something really special. Based on surface area it will be one of the largest temporary structures ever built in Australia.
Q. And your favourite?
A. The most inspirational and definitely my favourite tensile/temporary structure ever would have to be Alchemy Circle from this last edition (2016). It was designed and build by a South American group called Sagash. They are true masters and everything they do pushes boundaries. I wish I could share a link but they have no internet presence.
Q. The festivals you have worked on often have profound influences on people’s lives. How does it feel to be such an integral part of something so special?
A. It feels amazing to be part of something so huge- I still don’t really know what it is we are doing but I am just having a really good time doing it.
Q. The clothing side of Tetrik is also something special. When can we expect to see some new designs?
A. There is a new Tetrik clothing range coming out in a matter of weeks! There will be a bunch of new stock at Rainbow 2017 and then the rest of the collection will have an official release a week or two after. Keep an eye on the Facebook page or on www.tetrik.xyz.
Q. Will there be more giant sized hoodies coming our way?
A. YES! even bigger hoodies coming atch’a soon!
Q. And finally, when can we next dance under one of your incredible festival structures?
A. Rainbow main stage 2017, Babylon Festival main stage and Yemaya, plus a a few more little ones around the place. Hope to see you there!
To keep up to date with everything Tetrik, be sure to follow Tetrik apparel and Tetrik Structures on Facebook and don’t forget to check out their website, www.tetrik.xyz. You can also follow Hnymlk on Facebook and Mixcloud.
Feature Image Credit: Matt Jones