Posts for category Culture (Art & Music)

August 23rd, 2013  |  Filed under Afield in the World, Culture (Art & Music)

Burning Man Art Show at the Reno Airport

If you are traveling through the Reno Airport on your way to Burning Man this year we hope you will take a minute and see the Burning Man Airport Show at the DepARTure Gallery- Elizabeth Scarborough - curator, Glenda Solis - jewelry/material culture – and Maria Partridge. The show is open now, thru November 15,  2013, at Reno-Tahoe International Airport.

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August 22nd, 2013  |  Filed under Culture (Art & Music)

It Makes You Want To BELIEVE

believe SidneyThe fabulous John Curley has been keeping you up to date on all the crews and artists getting the Black Rock Desert ready to Welcome you. You have probably read his post about the recent  storms, and perhaps another on the way. My husband has been on the desert for a few weeks so I had been wondering about the damage, whether his trailer was anchored down, and how everyone who is building the city would be impacted by the weather.  And then my friend Sidney Erthal sent me this amazing photo of BELIEVE.

The “V” in BELIEVE was tilted by the storm, but had the “E” next to it to lean on. But, as you can see,  the “I” had fallen over, but there, in the morning after the storm, stood Truth is Beauty, standing taller than the “I”, just like she knew she needed to be there. Now that is a moment after a storm to make you smile.

BELIEVE: Laura Kimpton and Jeff Schomberg as part of The Large Word Series

Truth Is Beauty: Marco Cochrane and Crew as part of of The Bliss Project

Photo: Sidney Erthal Photography

August 19th, 2013  |  Filed under Culture (Art & Music)

Burning Man pinhole camera artists finally have a web presence!

TempleCheck out these pictures!

For a few years now I’ve been posting sporadically about the pinhole camera artists who produce some of the most amazing pictures to come out of Burning Man … and that’s saying a lot.

They needed the coverage, because despite being a (er, fairly) organized band with a recurring presence and even a little Burning Man staff support on the side, the pinhole camera artists never got their shit together enough to put up a web page.

They still haven’t.  But they’ve got a Facebook page.  And that Facebook page has some of their incredible work, and is a way you can connect with them if you want to help.

And seriously – check this stuff out.  You want to help.

Read more »

August 19th, 2013  |  Filed under Culture (Art & Music), Events/Happenings

Black Rock City Art Tours are yours!

arttoursAs you’re preparing to hit the road to Black Rock City, take a moment to grab this year’s Audio Art Tours brought to you, as always by the ultra wonderful folks at the ARTery.

You can load up these mp3s and be the learned one in your group to give details of all the amazing art that’s in store for you this year when some one asks, “I wonder what THIS one is called?”

From the Bathroom Beacons to Neverwas Haul, we have it all.  And while you’re out there, I highly recommend  trying to get on one of the ARTery art tours that leave from the ARTery daily. Stop by on the Esplanade and reserve a space the day before since space is limited. They’re a whole hecka fun and a great way to spend an hour or two.

Guides: Jim Tierney, Evonne Heyning

Written by: Jim Tierney, Douglas Wolk (and the respective artists)

And here’s more about how great these tours are

August 5th, 2013  |  Filed under Culture (Art & Music), Participate!

Spencer Tunick Nude Art Installation at Burning Man 2013

Spencer Tunick group shot at Burning Man 2000 (photo by Richard Denat)

Spencer Tunick group shot at Burning Man 2000 (photo by Richard Denat)

World renowned photographer and 2013 honorarium art grant recipient Spencer Tunick (check out his awesome (NSFW) website) is doing a photo shoot of one of his amazing art installations on playa this year. Spencer tells us how to be part of this epic experience:

“Desert Spirits by Spencer Tunick
Date/Time(s): Friday, August 30th, 2013 5 a.m. – 7 a.m.
Contact Email: projects here: projects (at)

We would like to invite you to POSE NUDE in a group photographic installation by artist Spencer Tunick. Spencer will choose men, women and any gender identity to be part of this unique installation. In order to be chosen we ask that you please send in a low resolution photograph of yourself. Participants will be selected based on photographs submitted to the email: projects here: projects (at)

Please send the image sooner rather than later. Most installations by Spencer do not have limits to the number of people participating, nor do they require the submission of a photograph. However, for this art work for Burning Man, there is a cap on the number of people participating due to the specific concept of the work.

Mexico City 4 (Zócalo, MUCA/UNAM) 2007, by Spencer Tunick

Mexico City 4 (Zócalo, MUCA/UNAM) 2007, by Spencer Tunick

We are asking for a photograph because we want to have a wide range of body types and skin tonalities represented in the final work. Although everyone is unique, If you are not chosen, it is simply because we may have reached the amount of people with similar specific characteristics. We apologize in advance if you are not chosen for this particular idea but please do not let it deter you from posing in future works by Spencer where there are no number limits.

Chosen participants will be contacted by email prior to August 24th with: location and further instructions. Please only sign up if you are committed to participating and able to wake up before sunrise (or stay up all night). The work will take place before sunrise in order to utilize the pre-dawn light. You will be in position when the sun rises. You only will be nude for a short period of time. …we know it’s chilly…so you will not be nude until right before the sun rises over the horizon and as the sun hits your body. 5am is just the call time to get you registered. We need everyone to be on time. In exchange for taking part, you will receive by mail, a limited edition print of the art work. PARTICIPANTS ONLY.

Thank you!”

August 4th, 2013  |  Filed under Culture (Art & Music)

Truth is Beauty will be Lighting up the Playa

TIB Best lightsI have been blogging about the work that comes out of Bliss Dance Studios for a long time.  Two of my favorite posts, one about Bliss Dance getting ready for the Playa in 2010 is Assembling Bliss Dance and then when she went to Treasure Island, Bliss Dance Has Emerged. Well now I have the pleasure of telling you about Truth is Beauty by Marco Cochrane and his huge crew.  Truth is Beauty is the second sculpture in the series, The Bliss Project, three monumental sculptures of a woman, Deja Solis, expressing her humanity. Truth is Beauty is about 55′ tall, constructed of welded steel rods and balls, covered in stainless steel mesh skin with interactive lighting effects. These sculptures are intended to demand a change in perspective, to be a catalyst for social change; to de-objectify women and inspire men and women to take action to end violence against women, thus allowing both women and men to live fully and thrive. Truth is Beauty is being installed at Burning Man 2013.

She will be lit with over 3,000 pixels are individually addressable and are enhanced with 3D printed light shades (below).  The maquette that is surrounded by the head and torso is a scale model of the lighting plan.


ping TIB

I have been spending quite a bit of time out at the studios and I had a chance to see Ping, a lighting programmer actually working on the program that will light her up at Burning Man 2013

aff hook TIBAnd for the first time in all of these years I actually contributed to the creation of Truth is Beauty by creating little pins out of wire to reach inside the mesh in smaller places on the sculpture, like her legs and arms.  I really had a great time, it felt great to do more than write about such a spectacular piece of art.  Wait until you see her lit up on the Playa. You will be amazed.

photos: Truth is Beauty and Ping by Jay R Houghton

June 24th, 2013  |  Filed under Culture (Art & Music)

Writers of Burning Man, Unite!

This could be you!

This could be you!

Does Burning Man have a literary culture, at all?  The answer is no.  But by this time next year – thanks to a new community effort – the answer might be “Yes.”

A pair of Burners named “What” (Courtney Sherwood) and “Wonton”  (Wendi Anderson) have,  in the best tradition of a do-ocracy, taken this aspect of our culture into  their own hands:  and want you to join them.

Literature is a big gaping hole in Burner culture.  In a January post entitled “Why does Burning Man have no literary culture?”  I wrote:

Burning Man has no signature writing style, derivative or otherwise.  For all the hundreds of books and articles that have been written about Burning Man over 26 years, for all the scholarly papers, the blog posts … no particular verbal style has emerged.  Saying “that’s like something you’d read at Burning Man” is nonsensical.  Could be anything.

Burning Man has no particular style of poetry, no particular authorial “voice.”  The Great Burning Man Novel has yet to be written – let alone to inspire others to write under its influence.

Why is that?  Why does Burning Man have such an advanced visual aesthetic … one that truly is influencing the whole world … and absolutely no literary culture at all?

I’m honestly asking here.  I don’t know.  I’m hoping someone can tell me.

What and Wonton don’t have answers, but have decided to find solutions.  The result is a new organization – and possibly a movement:  “Get Lit(erary) At Burning Man.”

Okay granted I’m not too fond of titles with puns in them, but the idea is tremendous:  it’s dedicated to  connecting Burner writers with one another, promoting already-planned writing workshops and events, and instigating new events along the way.   They’ll be leading Flash Fiction writing workshops on playa, providing reading opportunities, and offering other events – just for starters. Read more »

June 2nd, 2013  |  Filed under Culture (Art & Music)

A reading list inspired by, but not about, Burning Man

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAA few weeks ago a call went out on the Burning Nerds list:  ideas for books and articles that aren’t about Burning Man in any way, but that contain ideas and concepts that make you think of Burning Man, or could be applied to Burning Man.

The result was a pretty amazing list, and I’m including it below for your perusal.  There’s what sounds like some pretty amazing reading recommendations there.   It’s particularly interesting to realize:  this is what Burning Man makes people think of, and then delve into that.

Ideally the list should be organized alphabetically, or by topic … but I don’t have that kind of time.

Meanwhile, the most comprehensive list of academic books and articles about Burning Man per see (should you be inclined to stay on topic) can be found here.


Read more »