Posts in playa art

September 2nd, 2010  |  Filed under Culture (Art & Music)

Tutu Tuesday

Man, I LOVE this place. Things are in FULL SWING out in Black Rock City. Hope you’re here, safe and happy.

Man

Man

Black Rock City has filled out nicely and the streets are alive with promenading citizens and there is just SO much to do. Everyone is having their various parties and socials, fashion shows, meet ups, performances,  so many events you can never make them all. The place is one big pie and there are an infinite number of pieces. Don’t worry about getting yours, there is more than you could ever handle.

Tutu Tuesday became Tophat Tuesday and we’ve been visiting and socializing and gifting ever since. My favorite sticker of the week so far is “It was on Fire when I got Here”. We’ve already had rain, a double rainbow and traffic all the way from Empire. We saw the City grow and the sound camps are up, pumping out their ever present soundtrack of ambient insanity.

JB made a really cool map for center camp

JB made a really cool map for center camp

Some rumors I’ve heard include that next year’s THEME is going to be either “Life on Mars” or the “Baby Monkey in Underpants”. Out at 2:15 where the four story tall traffic cone is near DISORIENT they were giving balloon rides to people who weigh under 150lbs, but some girl was up there and one of the tethers broke so they had a little difficulty getting her down. I hope we don’t see a bunch of ravers flying away Saturday night after the burn, up, up and away. Be careful out there. We’ve got some dangerous ART this year. If you’re at the Mansonia Institute of Urban Studies in Center Camp this year stop by and see Dodger’s Pyrograph.

Megatropolis

Megatropolis

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August 30th, 2010  |  Filed under Building BRC, Culture (Art & Music)

The State of the Art

Minaret in the Keyhole with people

Minaret in the Keyhole with people

This morning we woke up to the light patter of rain on our dome. It was a fresh morning on the playa, one that sharpens your mind as you take a walk to check out the progress our ARTISTS are making beneath a cold blue sky speckled with dabs of white clouds.  The weather has been cold And there have been long white outs but our valiant artists have persevered and a huge array of projects are being completed.

We made our way towards the 2 o’clock side of the City and visited with Karen at Infinitarium. The sculptures are in place and they’re building out the fire effects. The Garden is a beautiful layout of plants with the tallest being the Fleur. There are some Willows, the Lovers (Two leaves), Trumpets and some Dandelions. Like I said, the weather has been rough on all the artists this last week, and this morning is was cold, cold, cold. Karen said, “Look at us. Who wears thermals at 10:30 in the morning on the playa? Who’d have thought.” Indeed, and that makes it all the more wonderful to see all the people out here trudging through the long hours to finish their projects.

Bliss Dance

Bliss Dance

We wiped the dust from our goggles and wandered out to the Keyhole where yes, Brian Tedrick’s Minaret is as beautiful as you hear it is. At night it is illuminated with rings of color and during all hours of the day and night our bold citizens climb up Minaret’s vertebra, then midway they go inside and make their way to the see-through sphere at the top to revel. It is truly a worthy Keyhole piece. Last night we met some folks who say it isn’t finished yet though. Still to be installed are misters in the top steel orb. These misters will release BBQ sauce and flame effects are still to be installed also that will, with the touch of a button at the bottom, instantly incinerate the revelers in the sphere, thereby creating a fine hourly grilling bonanza of our bountiful supply of citizens. They may have been joking but I say it sounds delish!!

We hear there was supposed to be snow on Donner pass today. Crazy.

If you want some beauty, this year make sure to get out to Bliss Dance by Marco Cochrane. She is a sublime form, twisting and flowing and simply divine. Today they were putting on her finishing touches.

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October 28th, 2009  |  Filed under Events/Happenings

No more ACE in the hole – RIP ACE Junkyard

Scott Beale / Laughing Squid

We finally lost ACE Junkyard to the ravages of an unreasonable San Francisco landlord. She won only on a technicality, after a long expensive battle by Bill Kennedy, proprietor extraordinaire of ACE Junkyard.

I hope many of you know the wonders of San Francisco’s ACE Junkyard.  If not let me clue you in to the significance of what we are losing.  Bill who is also known to some of as Billy the Junkman, Junkman or even Belinda, has been the purveyor of fine junk in San Francisco for over 25 years and ACE has been THE resource for playa artmaking in Bay Area for over 15 years.  Let it be known Bill has provided an incalculable about amount of funding for playa art in the last 15 years, in the form of JUNK – wondrous, glorious, re-usable, transformable, JUNK!

Scott Beale / Laughing Squid

Scott Beale / Laughing Squid

Over the years this junk has evolved into many ground-breaking forms of art.   Junk from ACE has been transformed into SRL’s machines, SEEMEN’s interactive work and Cyclecide’s pedal-powered carnival.  The list of artists doesn’t stop there. The following incomplete list of artists can all thank Bill for his uncanny ability to find that essential widget or for donating his  Junkyard venue to events like the famous Power Tool Drag Races: Flaming Lotus Girls, Rich Humphrey, Jarico Reese, Laird Rickard, Paul the Plumber, Big Daddy, John Law, Jim Mason, Michael Michael, Simone Davalos, Kimric Smythe, Shannon O’Hare, Sue Glover, Dan Das Man, Karen Cusolito, Scott Gasparian, Charles Gadeken, Kal Spelletich, Mark Perez, and Chicken John.

Come celebrate and say Goodbye to our favorite Junkyard on Saturday October 31st, Halloween at Cellspace 5020 Bryant Street. The Junkyard will be gone, but Bill remains and I’m sure he will figure out other ways to enrich us.

“The other side of it is…. well it was and is worth ever penny of it. The people, events, art, and most importantly to me the parts of myself that I found, and the person that I have become. A large part of who am now is because of the love and support on my family of friends I have made from this place.” -Bill The Junkman

Do you have a favorite ACE or Bill memory?

August 29th, 2009  |  Filed under Building BRC, Culture (Art & Music)

The State of the ART

Three days before the event begins, I am most pleased to report to you that this year’s ART is sprouting up like playa fire flowers all around our beloved Black Rock City. Everywhere one hears the sounds of drills and hammers, grinders and heavy equipment and the white hot crackle of acetylene torches at night beneath huge floodlights. The communal unloading, lifting and erecting is moving forward full force. Some many crews of artists haven’t stopped working since they hit the playa.

In a post apocalyptic world, there is a difference between surviving and surviving in style. In our desolate lake bed, we are surviving very much in style.

I was able to pull myself away from the alternating working and cocktail parties to take a stroll around and visit with the artists and take in some of this year’s installations.

The Man on his Tangled Bank

The Man on his Tangled Bank

The Man is atop a Tangled Bank this year. A forest of nailed wooden organic shapes surround him and create a space we haven’t ever seen in the Man base. The trees, or flames, or crystals, or dancers or whatever they look like to you suggest a small homage to the Belgian Waffle of years past. Whatever it is, I like it and true to the theme, it’s definitely a fresh evolution of the Man’s surroundings.

Currently the lighting, including a double helix that winds around the Man pole, and other Evolutionary Mud bug sculptures are being installed below.

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