People have lots of ideas about what Portland is like. Portland is weird and eclectic, some think, and the cable comedy Portlandia is partially a documentary (it’s not). I have met a lot of great people from Portland. Yes, some of them are weird. If you are familiar with the kilt-wearing, bag-pipe-playing, Darth-Vader-mask-wearing unicycle rider from the famous meme, I can assure you he has a real name and is a great guy to talk with.
But as far as Burners go we all like to think we are weird. And the team for the Portland region’s CORE project certainly self-identifies as such. They are bringing art that presents Portland’s soul to add to the circle at Burning Man.
Top row: James Dishongh, Pope Tart
Second row: deadletter, Magn0lia, Jackie, Mayem, Pi, Marklar, Catherine
Third row: Lory Osterhuber, Jason Brulotte, Browse, Brenda
Read more »
A digital rendering of the inside view
(image used with permission)
All across France, team members are enthusiastically committing to support, fund and build the French Circle of Regional Effigies (CORE) project Stairway to Heaven (“Un escalier vers le ciel” in French), one of 24 wooden sculptures created by Burning Man regional groups from across the world. Two leads, an architect, and a tight circle of talented people are investing their time and creativity in the production of an art project for Burning Man 2013.
Near Dijon, there’s Dubail “dub” Sylvain, an athletic trainer and member of the 2011 Temple Crew who organizes events around Europe while he prepares for CORE. In Toulouse, construction project manager Stephanie Pecoste prepares to work with a team of builders on site in the U.S. to realize this project. And in Paris, “Ludale” (he prefers to just use his Burner name) who made the leap from designing buildings to creating large scale art projects (such as Stairway’s spiraling tower), is arranging financing and support for the project.
Dubail “dub” Sylvain at his home in France
I met Dub at his home, in the little village of Ouges, five minutes from Dijon. He explained that there are a lot of excited volunteers. More than were initially expected. Now there are too many to have meetings on Skype, and the mailing list is expanding weekly. But meeting all of these people has been a lot of fun, Dub says. Read more »
Everything’s bigger in Texas, including the Burning Man regional event. By working with authorities to override a long-term population cap, Burning Flipside organizers have successfully rewritten the rules!
Photo by Mark Kaplan.
In order to increase the event’s capacity, State regulations required Flipside organizers to provide potable water, daily trash service, trash receptacles, cups, napkins, lighting and other services. But Flipside is a Leave No Trace event based on personal accountability; participants are expected to bring in everything they need and pack it out when they leave (sound familiar?).
The vast majority of large-scale events and festivals do provide trash cans, based on the assumption that attendees are not interested in picking up after themselves. Leave No Trace events like Burning Man and Burning Flipside have a different ethos. The latter trust that community members are not only perfectly capable of cleaning up after their own wild rumpuses, but that they feel satisfied and self-reliant as a result of doing so.
We come together, build something amazing, burn it to the ground and then pick up every last cinder. It’s an achievement we’re proud of, and it’s part of what defines us as a community rather than merely an event. We do it because we respect the land and the right of others to enjoy the land once we depart.
Incorporating trash services would change the very nature of what Flipside is about and Austin Artistic Reconstruction (AAR), the organization running Flipside, wasn’t willing to subvert the community’s values just to sell more tickets.
Faced with a choice of either going against our community’s values by providing trash cans, or limiting the population, AAR did what they had to do:
They changed the rules.
Read more »
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 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. Read more »
February 22nd, 2013 | Filed under News
This could be you!
Greetings! We’re excited to announce three Internships in our San Francisco office.
Three unpaid internships will provide the right candidates with opportunities to engage with the pre-event preparations of Burning Man’s Communications Department, Regional Network and/or the Art Department during the busy pre-event production cycle (June-August) and on site in Black Rock City during the 2013 Burning Man event (August 25th – September 2nd). Internships require a high level of organization, acute attention to detail and deadlines, top-notch written and verbal communication skills, and a keen ability to think quickly and function well in a high-pressure, creative environment that is often chaotic but always a lot of fun.
Interns will be required to attend the Burning Man event, and must be prepared to be radically self-reliant for up to two weeks in that environment, one of few resources and intensely harsh conditions. Work leading up to the event will be conducted in a professional office environment in downtown San Francisco. The number of hours per week is flexible depending upon candidates’ needs, schedule, and experience. Candidates who are available to continue their internship post-event (through the end of September) are encouraged to apply.
Internships will provide invaluable experience for someone wishing to learn about media relations, event production, and Burning Man arts and culture. Interns will have opportunities to attend high level meetings, participate in planning processes, draft communications, and work alongside many accomplished professionals in the field of communications and arts management.
PLEASE NOTE: In order to be eligible, interns MUST receive official school credit for their internship. Prior to beginning an internship with Burning Man, candidates must provide written proof that credit will be received from the relevant educational institution. Read more »
Logo Courtesy of our friends, the LT Burners
I’m sitting in Warsaw airport in Poland, waiting for my long-anticipated flight to Vilnius, Lithuania. I’m on my way to Degantis Jonas, the first Burning Man Regional event to take place in the Baltic States. A few years ago, when Goku, our Lithuanian Regional Contact, first reached out to us at BMHQ to tell us about the burgeoning Burner scene in Lithuania, I remember being completely fascinated that a Burner community had sprung up in what felt like so foreign and far-flung a place. Lithuania? And, where is that, exactly? Not only did the community’s existence seem exotic, but it was also clear right away that the Lithuanian Burners were an impressively ambitious lot. During our first Skype call, Goku told me about the LT Burners’ plans for a large-scale theme camp at Burning Man 2011. Camp “Blukis,” made to look like the Blukis tree stump, a symbol in Lithuanian folklore, the space would house a bike-powered cinema (the “Velocinema”), potato pancake pow-wows and drum circles. Goku was also in the midst of planning the first Burning Man Film Festival in a Box in Kaunas, and seeing to it that films were translated into his native tongue. Though we’ve only met once on the playa, Goku and I have become close comrades through countless email exchanges, Skype calls, and Facebook posts. I’m now picturing him greeting Playground, my traveling companion, and me at the Vilnius airport in a few hours. I’ve been practicing my greeting: “Labas, kaip sekasi?” (Hi! How are you?) and, though sleep deprived and delirious from 21 hours of travel, I couldn’t be more excited. Read more »
September 9th, 2011 | Filed under News
The Burning Man Suggestion Box?
IMPORTANT: PLEASE USE THE EMAIL below FOR YOUR FEEDBACK. NOT JUST the comments to the blog.
How was your experience? Let us know.
Each year after the event, Burning Man staff reflect on what we’ve accomplished and what we plan to do in the future — changes, improvements, what was right, wrong, etc. We want to include your feedback in our planning process. Due to the fact we typically get a strong response to this request for feedback, it is not practical to reply directly to everyone. Depending on the nature of the feedback, some participants may receive a direct response. If many feedback emails touch upon similar issues, then we will draft a general response that will be sent on the Jackrabbit Speaks and posted in the Q&A AfterBurn Report in early 2012. We DO promise that your email will be read. We want to hear from new and old Burners alike. Starting with the good before the bad is helpful. ;-)
If you’d like to contribute, send your constructive comments to xxxxx by October 19th. [UPDATE: Feedback loop is now closed for 2011.]
Furthermore, Burning Man staff members are interested in meeting with participants and hearing their thoughts in person during their increasing number of trips to meet with Regional groups year round. We will gladly work with any Regional groups to set up gatherings with participants when Board or Senior Staff members travel. If you would like to find out more about the Regional Network and a group in your area please visit http://regionals.burningman.com.
Thanks for taking the time to contribute your thoughts. We promise we’ll read what you have to say. Looking forward to 2012!
Burning Man is still sold out.
To the extent that you learn about a community during a crisis, I wonder what our reaction so far says about us.
Many are mocking the ticket seekers, suggesting this is a kind of Darwinian victory: if you can’t get your ticket you don’t deserve to get there. The Onion parodied Burning Man with a similar conceit about eight years ago. It was funny then, but it still wasn’t original.
It’s less funny now, because it’s become apparent that some very good people are being left on the outside: people who clearly have a lot to offer. People who would be a benefit to the entire community – and I don’t just mean “big name DJs.” In fact, I’m not talking about them at all. However few tickets there are, Burning Man will never run out of DJs.
But we have run out of space. In my previous post I suggested that 21st century Burning Man was a culture of abundance, and this is our first meaningful encounter with scarcity. I made a few suggestions about what to do about it.
Many people writing in the comments section had much better ideas than I did. But by far the most trenchant idea proposed was this: the future of Burning Man belongs to the regionals.
They got what I’d missed: the ticket limit is potentially a catalyst turning the regionals from followers to co-conspirators. “Burning Man” itself would become a kind of pilgrimage site that the faithful try to get to once in a while, but “Burning Man” culture would be led by dozens of regional events around the globe.
How you feel about that might depend on your experiences with the regionals. It does for me. Would you mind sticking around while I explain this? Read more »