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Costume Artist Lali Whisper - Remembering Phangan 'Love in all Forms'

1 Jun 2017

Some people are very attached to certain places and Artist Lali was never one of them.

“When you are born Russian it means you can't freely travel as you need visas wherever you go and it's a challenge. Perhaps I always liked challenges or maybe I have this traveling gene in me, so nothing ever stopped me from moving around”.

Lali left Russia in 2005, she lived and worked in many different countries and it always brought unexpected adventures. The same happened with Phangan island which she has visited every now and then since she was 18 years old. 

“My work allows me to travel and in 2010 when I came to the island I ended up staying a little longer, which is the usual story about the Island’s captivating energy.  I came for romance and inspiration, I didn't know then that I would find long lasting love with the island, that I will become a sun worshiper and find professional growth in the jungle of Koh Phangan”. 

Lali has always been making clothes and costumes and was already was working with big Russian superstar Dima Bilan when she met Georgia from Jungle Experience.

“Georgia asked me if I could try and make show costumes for the festival, but the style of my previous works was very different and I've never worked for music festivals before, I didn't know this field so was not sure if I should take the offer. But I remember Georgia saying - ‘I believe in you! You can do it!’, and when she saw my work, she hardly knew me back then”. 

This was a life changing moment for Lali. It's amazing what someone's faith in you can do and she is forever grateful to Georgia for showing her this magic.

“Without her and all Jungle's team to support my story would be completely different and I can honestly say I wouldn't be the person I am now”. 

Lali found it fascinating to create costumes for the outdoor music scene, it meant she had to learn many new skills and a new approach in designing.

She chose futuristic themes in the costumes for Jungle Experience, complex and constructive looks, some of the costumes took her more than 150 hours to make.

“I am thankful for the opportunity that Jungle Experience gave me,  to discover new potential of my talent, which took me to the new level of my craft.

I was making things I never thought I could make. It widened my vision and added to my professional confidence”.

Lali ended up making many costumes and decorations for this incredible festival for several years, meeting and working with admirable artists like Oliver Twist and the Alien Sisters. 

She describes it as an amazing working and learning experience which transformed her into a more open, positive and willing to try person. 

“The best moments for me were when I saw the smiles of Georgia, our team and of course the guests of the festival, because to see how your work makes people happy is the best reward”. 

Koh Phangan showed Lali love in many forms, it reconnected her with nature and therefore herself.

“It taught me to feel my way and to trust that feeling. I met so many wonderful people from around the world who forever became my friends, the true magic of the island is how it unites people who come there.

Community living is not an easy task because you have to learn acceptance, forgiveness, patience and trust, you have to be able to hold hands but in the same time be able to let go. I see people change there, be more caring and supportive of each other and that is the power of the island. Once you learn to tune into your surroundings, you will never be selfish and self concentrated again.

Everything is connected and unity is life, those are the main things that the island unveiled in me. It also showed me the world beyond myself,  priceless ability to be aware of any life and sensations around you”. 

Lali was lucky to get involved in many different art projects around the island. She met moto fellows from Asian Nomad MC who let her in their riding family.  Together they did many charity acts for Charlie's Children Charity and again it  was an unforgettable experience of being together and helping others.

“I want to say thank you to the President of the MC Carlo, for being my guide and my friend!” 

Lali could never imagine that time on the little island in Thailand would lead her to so much personal and professional achievement. That it would fulfil her soul and heart in such ways that she didn't know existed.

“With all those gifts I continue to travel the world and apply what I've learned there in daily life. I am looking forward to come back soon to see my friends, ride with my brothers and make more art for Jungle Experience. 

I want to say to every person I have met on Koh Phangan - You stay in my heart, thank you for the ride!!”