Call for Submissions: Burning Man 2013 Sticker Design Project

An excellent Burning Man sticker!
An excellent Burning Man sticker!

This is the official call for designs for the 2013 Burning Man stickers! Your design could be the one passed out with the materials you receive as you pass through the Greeters Station upon entering Black Rock City. Other designs will become official sticker schwag passed out on-and-off the playa throughout the year. Help us remember our wonderful home in the desert even when we’re away throughout the year. So, don’t hesitate. Participate! Thank you and good luck!

Size: Your designs must use one of the three die sizes:

• 2. 5″ x 5.75” with a 0.125” corner radius
• 3″ x 3″” square with a 0.062” corner radius
• 3” Diameter Circle

(more…)

Stanford Lecture: Burning Man at Google

In a lecture at Stanford University on January 14, 2011, Fred Turner (Associate Professor of Communication) discussed his opinions on the social phenomenon of Burning Man and how he thinks the ideals of the festival apply to the marketplace that is evolving in our society, specifically in the Silicon Valley.

It’s a fascinating talk, filled with interesting insights … watch for yourself, and share your thoughts in the comments below:

 

Announcing the Burning Man YouTube Channel

Our YouTube channel!
Our YouTube channel!

We’re excited to announce the launch of Burning Man’s official YouTube Channel … and YOU are invited to participate!

This channel showcases the best videos and films about (or inspired by) Burning Man’s history, ethos, global community, and growing year-round culture. It highlights videos that capture the reverie and reverence of Black Rock City — where we celebrate community and creativity in a crucible of ideas, art, and technology — and illuminates the global reach of Burning Man culture. In short, this channel tells the story of Burning Man’s evolution in the world, including reminders of the past, landmarks for the present and inspiration for the future.

We invite your participation! (more…)

Firefly Opens Studios to Boston Area Community

No need to wait three months to dive into the art of Burning Man! Burning Man Regional Groups in more than 120 regions spanning over 20 countries are developing ways to engage local communities around the creative spirit, year-round.

Firefly Arts Collective
Firefly Arts Collective lights up Somerville Open Studios (Photo Credit: Jonathan Macleod)

Earlier this month, Firefly Arts Collective  — who organize the official New England Burning Man regional event Firefly — took part in Somerville Open Studios, one of the largest weekend-long open studio events in the United States.

Home to many Firefly artists and a growing arts community, Somerville is located just north of Boston. (more…)

Google CEO Larry Page Wants a Tech Burning Man

Larry Page at the Google I/O Conference (Photo Credit: James Martin/CNET)
Larry Page at the Google I/O Conference (Photo Credit: James Martin/CNET)

In his keynote speech at this week’s Google I/O developers conference, Google CEO (and long-time Burner) Larry Page suggested the world would benefit from a temporary (if not permanent?) autonomous zone free of social rules where people can experiment with new technologies and innovations, free of the restrictions inherent in attempting to deploy them broadly in the normal world. Essentially, a technology-specific Burning Man.

As reported by TechCrunch, Mr. Page says:

“We don’t want our world to change too fast. But maybe we could set apart a piece of the world … I like going to Burning Man, for example. An environment where people can try new things. I think as technologists we should have some safe places where we can try out new things and figure out the effect on society. What’s the effect on people, without having to deploy it to the whole world.”

Suffice to say, we couldn’t agree more.

Here’s more coverage on the talk from Silicon Beat and CNN, and his full speech can be seen here.

Burning rituals for our digital world

Photo by Marcus Obal
Photo by Marcus Obal

For the past few weeks I’ve been struggling with something Chip Conley said at Burning Man’s Global Leadership Conference.  (You can read my thoughts about his entire presentation here.)

“The more digital we get,” he said, “the more ritual we need.”

I jumped those words.  My heart pounded.  “Yeah!” I remember thinking, with an exclamation point and everything.  I wrote it down in my notebook and put a little star next to it – my shorthand for “this is worth a whole article on its own.”

Larry Harvey has been talking about just this kind of thing for years.  He even insisted that the following line be inserted in to Burning Man’s charter:  the organization places “embodied ritual before symbolism.”

Which is awesome, to the extent it makes any sense at all.

But getting excited by something like that is a lot easier than explaining what it means, or why it’s true.

Or if it’s true.

The most prominent counter-argument against what Conley and Harvey may be getting at was probably written by … well … me, in a 2011 post called “Burning Man Doesn’t Do ‘Ritual,’ and probably never will.”

So obviously I might not be 100 percent on board with this concept that so excites me.

I stand by what I wrote in that post.  But I also think Conley has hit on something vitally important, that needs to be explored – and that Burning Man may be the most advanced form of that “something important” we have. (more…)

Never Doubt the Power of a Spark

A couple amazing videos came across our radar recently. They’re amazing in and of themselves, but also as an exercise in contrasts … and a vivid reminder that every Big Thing started small.

One is a Super 8 video shot by Bob G at the first Burning Man to take place on the Black Rock Desert in 1990 (he added the soundtrack in 2000 as an effort to juxtapose what Burning Man was to where it’s evolved). The other is a beautiful high-definition time lapse video of Burning Man 2011 called “The Fertile Desert” by filmmaker Roy Two Thousand.

Never doubt the power of a spark to ignite a flame that will burn the world.

 

Yep, It is Burning Man Season! Here Comes the Art!

truth is beauty may 2013We have been out and about the last couple of weeks visiting some big art that is going to Burning Man this year. First we stopped by to see how Truth is Beauty is progressing. Marco Cochrane, the sculptor, says:

Truth is Beauty is intended to be a catalyst for social change; to de-objectify women and express the basic truth of femininity, a truth that is dangerous for individual women to express. They are a reminder of what we gain when we value women. My hope is to inspire men and women to take action to end violence against women, thus allowing both women and men to live fully and thrive.

Standing 55 feet tall and weighing 7,000 pounds Truth is Beauty will be constructed using:

• 25,000 feet of steel rod and pipe;

• 6,500 steel ball connection points;

• 2000 square feet of stainless steel mesh; and

• 55,000 single welds.

One thousand five hundred (1,500) individual multi-colored LED lights will be distributed throughout her body. These lights will be controlled by a custom iPad application to create a spectacular light show that will enhance and expand the visual experience.

If you would like to contribute to Truth is Beauty their Indiegogo campaign is HERE.

 

Scott London for Rolling Stone
Scott London for Rolling Stone

While we were on Treasure Island, I spoke to  Katy Boynton, the sculptor of Heartfullness.  Heartfullness was at Burning Man 2012 for the first time.  It is a 12 by 15 foot steel sculpture of a heart that has been broken and pieced back together, damaged and pieces may be missing, but this weathered heart is stronger and infinitely more interesting. Katy told us they were going to do some small scale testing for adding fire to her piece for the Playa this year, and we got to watch. Gotta love fire! (more…)