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.
We 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
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! Read more »
A temple is being built in Christchurch, New Zealand, commemorating the magnitude 6.3 earthquake that devastated that city in February 2011, killing 185 people.
Inspired by the ritual of Burning Man’s temples, and a recipient of a 2012 Black Rock Arts Foundation grant, the Temple for Christchurch will serve as a sacred space where people can leave mementos and write on its walls before witnessing its eventual burning. The intention is to help residents of Christchurch reflect upon and come to terms with the aftermath of the disaster.
Architectural mapping of Richter scale waveforms
Artist Hippathy Valentine designed the Temple as an architectural interpretation of the Richter scale waveforms that were created by the earthquake itself — and it symbolically stands 6.3 meters in height at its peak. Fittingly, it’s being constructed on one of the many empty demolition sites that now are common in Christchurch. Its modular design allows the structure to be taken apart and reconstructed in the New Zealand countryside, where it will be burned.
Tales From The Playa are dreams and memories of events that took place at Burning Man, as told by its participants.
by Kenny Reff
So here I am, spending another evening attempting to write a novel. My daughter is upstairs packing for college, I’m recently divorced, and about to be kid-less for the first time in 18 years. Wow.
While doing research for the novel, I come across a web page telling me Burning Man is happening in two weeks. It’s something I’ve heard about for years, but being 50+ and on the East Coast, I don’t know anyone else who’d ever gone.
Could I do it? In just two weeks? Of course not.
I stare at the week of August 27, but unbelievably, it is clear. The event had been sold out for months, but a ticket on eBay was coming due in 20 minutes. I placed the bid and won. And forty minutes later I have round-trip frequent flier tickets for free. It seems like I was meant to do this. Landing frequent flier tickets 12 days out? You know that just doesn’t happen.
But the real challenge I face is how to get all my shit to camp. Read more »
Looking for a different way to celebrate Cinco de Mayo this weekend? Join Burning Man Project for Cinco De Make-O, a free day of maker workshops on Saturday, May 4th from 1 – 3 p.m. here at Burning Man headquarters in San Francisco.
(Photo by Candice Nyando)
Want to learn how to create your own solar power system? Or make musical instruments with found objects? Or both? We got you covered.
At 1:00pm, Small Scale Solar 101 will present an overview of small and portable solar technology, including solar terminology, how it can be used for art, tricks to limit power usage and more. It will be followed by Small Scale Solar 102 at 2:00pm with a hands-on opportunity to put a small system together. These workshops will be led by Chaz Pelling.
(Photo by Waldemar Horwat)
At 1:30pm, you’ve got two instrument-making workshops to choose from. In the first one, “Making Music with Found Objects”, Lydia of the musical group GamelanX will guide participants in creating musical instruments out of found objects (participants should bring discarded metal objects such as cans, pipes, car parts, kitchen utensils, etc.). The second workshop will be led by members of the Exploratorium’s “Explorables” group, demonstrating how to make several easy instruments out of drinking straws — all materials will be provided for this one. Both workshops conclude at 2:45pm, when everyone will convene for a music jam!
Please RSVP for the workshop(s) you would like to attend.
Burning Man Project is part of a network of non-profit and volunteer groups working to grow the Burning Man cultural movement by circulating the Burning Man ethos globally. For more information on Burning Man Project, please visit their website.
In the middle of all the physical and metaphorical dust storms, The 10 Principles keep the beautiful chaos on track. Some are pretty clear, like “Leave No Trace.” Others are more tricky to get your head around. As a long-time Burner, I am sometimes asked to clarify or explain the Principles as I understand them. Read the official explanations here, and then check out my thoughts in the video above.
These views are solely the views of Halcyon and do not represent the opinions of The Burning Man Organization.
AfrikaBurn 2013 — Burning Man’s official African regional Burn — is underway in Tankwa, South Africa. Now in its seventh year, AfrikaBurn is rightfully touted as “the spectacular result of the creative expression of a community of volunteers who, once a year, gather in the Tankwa Karoo to create a temporary city of art, theme camps, costume, music and performance!”
The event takes place May 1-6 on an expanse of remote desert in the Northern Cape Province of South Africa akin to the Black Rock Desert of Nevada (albeit a little more rocky), and its population has steadily grown since its inception … they’re expecting 8,000 participants this year. Read more »
Burning Man’s Lawsuit Against New Fees Moves Ahead NBC Bay Area (4/30/2013) The Man does not abide the county’s fee. A lawsuit filed by organizers of Burning Man against Pershing County, Nevada — where Black Rock City sets up every August in the desert — over the local government’s new fees for the event is going forward, according to the San Francisco Examiner.