AfrikaBurn greeters bell (photo by BettieJune)
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 »
May 1st, 2013 | Filed under News
[This post will be updated periodically as new media coverage occurs.]
Photo by Scott Stallard
Judge allows Burning Man lawsuit against Pershing County to move ahead
S.F. Examiner (4/29/13)
A federal judge ruled that a lawsuit against Pershing County, Nev., by the organizers of Burning Man can move forward.
Federal judge in Reno makes rulings in Burning Man lawsuit
Reno Gazette Journal (4/29/13)
Several arguments in the lawsuit filed by Burning Man organizers against Pershing County will get to stand trial after a federal judge also dismissed several of their allegations.
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.
FLOAT project poster
Every year, the Black Rock Arts Foundation (BRAF) — Burning Man’s sister non-profit dedicated to the funding of interactive, participatory and civic art projects around the world, year round — awards grants to support art projects that reflect and forward its mission.
In 2012, one of those grant recipients was FLOAT, “a participatory art/design project using air-quality-sensing kites in Beijing, China. FLOAT had two components; a workshop and a public installation. The workshops gathered local Beijing residents to make kites with an air-quality-sensing module, and the public installation was a group kite flight in parks throughout the city using these kites. The air quality data was fed and geolocated onto a mapping API, and displayed through LED lights. A series of longer term installations throughout the city offered residents ‘air quality stations’ that displayed air quality data in real time, previously recorded data and education about urban health. Through the poetics and playfulness of kite flying, FLOAT sparked dialogue on urban environmental health issues, and gave agency to city dwellers to map, record and engage actively in the monitoring of their environment.”
A scene from “Stars in the Haze”, by Joshua Frank
If you find this ingenious and important project intriguing, we highly recommend you watch “Stars in the Haze”, a fascinating short documentary film about the project, written, shot and edited by Joshua Frank.
You can see a full listing of all of BRAF’s art grant recipients from 2013 and years past here on their website. These grants are made possible by the generous donations of good folks like YOU. If you’d like to help, please donate.
Butane-Propane News, April 2013
The April 2013 issue of Butane-Propane News (BPN) (dubbed “The New York Times of the LPG industry”) has a great article by John Needham about flame effects artist Eric Smith, Burning Man Fire Art Safety Team (FAST) Manager DaveX, and this little shindig out in the desert called Burning Man. You might have heard of it?
“Spire of Fire” in downtown Reno, 2011 (photo by Bill Kositzky)
If you saw the beautiful 48′-tall tower of insane flame effects known as “Spire of Fire” either on playa in 2010, in downtown Reno, New York, Las Vegas or elsewhere, then you know Eric’s work (together with Steve Atkins). And if you’ve ever seen fire (e.g. if you had your eyes open) in Black Rock City then you know DaveX’s handiwork … yep, he’s the one who makes it possible for us to burn safely out there.
These guys are not only involved with flame effects and fire safety in Black Rock City, they also travel the country (and beyond) conducting workshops for would-be fire artists, teaching them how to build and use flame effects safely, thus ensuring that more fire artists are being born all the time and people are finding creative outlets for their inner fire bug. Which? Is great, by our standard.
Pepe Ozan (photo by Dust & Illusions)
We are deeply saddened by the news of artist Pepe Ozan’s recent death. Pepe was a formidable and passionate artist, sculptor and visionary who contributed greatly to the Burning Man experience. As one of the great creators of Burning Man art over a period spanning decades, Pepe gave tremendously to the event, the community and ultimately to the culture that has grown out of Black Rock City.
“Lingam”, 1993 (photo by Stuart Harvey)
One of Pepe’s lingam sculptures was first burned at Burning Man in 1993, and he created “Pepe’s Tower” each year after that until 2000. In Burning Man’s early years in the Black Rock Desert, the ritual burning of “Pepe’s Tower” on Friday night was traditionally followed by the burning of the Man the next evening. The Friday night ritual became more elaborate each year, and in 1996 it was renamed “The Burning Man Opera”.
“Le Nystere de Papa Loko” opera, 1999 (Photo by Tom Pendergast)
Pepe’s elaborate operas included “The Arrival of Empress Zoe” (1996), “The Daughters of Ishtar” (1997), “The Temple of Rudra” (1998), “Le Mystere De Papa Loko” (1999), “The Thaur-Taurs of Atlan” (2000), and ”Ark of the Nereids” (2002), which featured a 35′-long mobile sculpture / musical instrument in the form of a Spanish Galleon crossed with a mythical aquatic creature. These epic performances, remembered fondly by so many in our community, would feature over 2,000 dancers and performers – in a true demonstration of radical inclusion, any and all Burners were invited to participate. Read more »
Kumbh Mela “art car”. Photo by Chip Conley.
Chip Conley is (amongst other things) a successful hotelier, world-traveler, festival aficionado and Burning Man Project board member. He’s just returned from a five-week tour of Asia, during which he attended five different festivals. Lucky for us, one of the festivals he attended — along with 80 million other people — was the centuries-old Kumbh Mela, the world’s largest gathering of religious pilgrims, which takes place every three years in India.
So how does Kumbh Mela compare to Burning Man? Well, seeing distinct commonalities in the experiences, Chip penned a fascinating post comparing the two in his Fest300 blog. And we? We are the beneficiaries of his perspective.
Read Chip’s blog post here. While you’re there, be sure to poke around his other posts … they’re great.
Have you been to Kumbh Mela? What are your thoughts? Let us know in the comments.
January 28th, 2013 | Filed under News
Ticket cuddle puddle
The Low Income Ticket Program for Burning Man 2013 is now accepting applications!
The Low Income Ticket program provides 4,000 tickets (at $190 each) — while supplies last — to those who provide proof of financial hardship. Our Ticketing department reviews each application and awards tickets to those who are best able to demonstrate need. Applicants should receive a response within 4-6 weeks of submitting their application. These tickets are non-transferrable and must be purchased and picked up at Will Call in Black Rock City.
Visit our ticketing page for information about how to apply. We will announce via the Jackrabbit Speaks Newsletter when these tickets are gone.
UPDATE (4/15/13): The 2013 Low Income Ticket program is no longer accepting applications. The process of reviewing applications and awarding tickets is still in progress.
Want to build this? Get your fundraising engine in gear! Photo by Gabe Kirchheimer, 2007.
If you’re dreaming about creating a large art project — and don’t happen to be independently wealthy — you’re going to need to do some fundraising to make your dream a reality. And fundraising is an art as much as it is a science.
The Burning Man Project, as part of its ongoing workshop series leveraging and sharing the expertise in our community, recently offered a workshop on Crowdsourcing & Fundraising for Art Projects. The workshop was held at Burning Man’s San Francisco headquarters on December 13, 2012, and was led by Will Chase, who brings to the subject 10 years of experience in arts management, art curation, event production, art creation, and fundraising for art projects.
We invite you to listen to the audio recording of the workshop, and to download the accompanying PowerPoint presentation to follow along with as you listen.
If you’d like to propose a workshop topic for the Burning Man Project, learn more.
UPDATE: I recently came across this great post on crowdsourced fundraising for Burning Man art projects, very much worth a read.