Best Art Installation: Corporate Headquarters
Artists Derek Doublin and Vanessa Bonet created an amazing piece of temporary art, staffing it so it could run through the day and deep into the night. Corporate Headquarters is a three-story office building in the middle of the festival, with a helicopter on the roof and a billboard on one wall advertising "Pond Water: fragrance for hippos." Walk over to one side and through plate-glass windows, you see a three-story office staffed by seven to nine people, dressed in business attire and wearing giant hippo masks on their heads. Top floor is the executive suite, below is middle management and the ground floor is the mailroom — and all the hippos are engaged in frenzied, useless office activity. There's even a red telephone outside: Pick it up and make it through the voicemail tree ("your call is very unimportant to us") and a hippo will answer the phone and grunt at you. The parody of corporate America, branding, the mercenary imperative and economic stratification was fun to watch — but none of those things exactly disappeared when music fans walk through the Coachella gates.