Posts in regionals

April 6th, 2011  |  Filed under Afield in the World

Feed the Artists – Moving Out Into the World!

The folks at Feed the Artists are taking their good works initiative — born in Black Rock City — out into the real world. Learn how you can help. They write:

Feed the Artists (aka FtA) is a communal art grant that enriches Burner community ties through food gifting. The program has literally fed thousands of artists since 2007, and inspired radical collaboration amongst diverse groups of Burners. FtA has grown quickly at Burning Man, as many have come to embrace the program’s four primary goals:

  1. To support artists in the Burning Man community
  2. To create healthy and meaningful interactions between artists, theme camps, and their peers through bonding, collaborating, and sharing resources for the benefit of the entire community: Radical Collaboration.
  3. To elevate the role of food on the playa to an art form.
  4. To allow the power of these shared values to generate a self-sustaining tradition at Burning Man, then the Regional Burns, and then to the world beyond. Read more »
March 22nd, 2011  |  Filed under Events/Happenings

Larry Harvey Speaks at Burning Man’s Regional Culture Mixer

If you’re into Burning Man culture and its place in the global community — and you live in the Bay Area — you’ll want to attend this great event on April 1st, including a thought-provoking talk by Larry Harvey on the future of Burning Man.

Free Talk by Larry Harvey
and
The Convectional Caucus

A Burning Man Regional Culture Mixer
WHEN: Friday, April 1st, 6PM-9PM
WHERE: Bently Reserve, 400 Sansome Street, SF

This is a free, private event.  If you wish to attend, you must RSVP to: caucus-rsvp here: caucus-rsvp (at) burningman.com

Join us for this very special event!  This social mixer is a rare opportunity to meet the visiting 150+ Regional Contacts and community leaders from all over the world! They will be in town to participate in the 5th Annual Regional Network Leadership Summit. Designed to strengthen and spread Burning Man’s culture, the Summit is an opportunity for the visiting Regionals to learn from one another and to be inspired by the Bay Area Burning Man community.

On display will be a cross-section of our cultural fabric from around the Bay Area. Community organizations, Burning Man departments, related non-profits, and art groups will be on hand to share their missions and goals for the future. They will be displaying materials expressive of their methodology for both Regionals and you to absorb and take home, inspiring growth in world-wide Burner culture and events.

At approximately 7:30PM, Larry Harvey will speak, addressing the future of Burning Man’s culture and community in this ever-changing world.

We hope you’ll join us on the 1st to learn and share what you know. Help us take a monumental step into the future of our global culture!

This is a free and private event.

Because there are ONLY 500 spots available, PLEASE RSVP!

Please RSVP to caucus-rsvp here: caucus-rsvp (at) burningman.com

February 23rd, 2011  |  Filed under Culture (Art & Music)

Hawaii Part Two: O’ahu Boogaloo

Burning Man, Hawaiian style...the Ka Palina flag

“O’ahu” is Hawaiian for “The Gathering Place.” In keeping with its name, I found O’ahu to be the most diverse Hawaiian island I visited and also the most cosmopolitan. The pristine beaches and lush hills are sharply contrasted by the skyscrapers, highways, and factories of Honolulu and its surrounding areas. Amidst this duality, one finds business moguls, adventurous tourists, surfers and wayward souls who fled “The Mainland” for O’ahu and decided to stay. Such was the case with our two O’ahu Burning Man Regional Contacts, Geoff Hearl and Andi Cuniberti as well as with many other Burning Man participants who have created a home for themselves on this island in the middle of the Pacific.

In a dedicated effort to bring the Burners on O’ahu together and to keep the Burning Man spirit alive year-round, Andi and Geoff offer a warm welcome to those wanting to get involved with the Hawaii Burning Man community.

Upon our arrival in Honolulu, Andie Grace and I were greeted, leis in hand, by Andi, Geoff and Mike, a Hawaiian Burner who’d come to Black Rock City for the first time in 2010. Over a home-cooked dinner at Andi’s house on the North Shore, we learned a great deal about Burner life on O’ahu and the ways in which Andi and Geoff are encouraging year-round participation through a range of projects, Meet n Greets and other community gatherings.

Our gracious hosts,Geoff (left) and Andi (right), in line at Keneke's BBQ

One way in which Burners can participate in Hawaii is through the first ever CORE Project (Circle of Regional Effigies). This year, Hawaii and over twenty-five Burning Man Regional groups from across the world will be building effigies on playa in a circle around the Man. These effigies will be burned ceremoniously on playa to celebrate the year-round communities that have grown out of the Burning Man event. Many Regional groups have chosen to create an effigy that symbolizes their city or state (for example, the Las Vegas Burners are building a showgirl) while other groups have chosen to recreate an effigy from one of their official Burning Man Regional events. The Hawaii Burners’ contribution to the circle will be “The Phoenix,” an effigy they built for Rebirth, an annual camping event that takes place on the Big Island. The design for “The Phoenix” was initially conceived by artist Mike Muang who travels each year from Boston to Hawaii to build the wooden sculpture that is burned, like the Man, on Saturday evening each year during Rebirth. Recreating “The Phoenix” on playa will take a lot of man power as well as some fundraising. Currently, Andi and Geoff are looking for artists and other creative spirits to come forward and share their ideas and skills.There are currently myriad ways to get involved with the CORE project as well as Burnal Equinox, an upcoming community event in Honolulu.Proceeds from Burnal Equinox event in Honolulu will directly fund the purchase of supplies and materials for ‘The Phoenix” effigy build. For more information, visit the Hawaii page in the Regionals section of the Burning Man website.

"The Phoenix" effigy burn at Rebirth, 2008 (Photo by Seth from Honolulu)

The CORE project is not only a way for the Hawaii group to come together through hands-on participation but also a way to let other Hawaiian Burners know that there are ways to stay connected to Burning Man year-round on O’ahu.  “Burners from all over Hawaii go to Burning Man but they don’t always know that we have a local community here on the islands,” Andi explains. “Maybe having ‘The Phoenix’ out out on playa this year will raise awareness.”

Another way in which Andi and Geoff have been encouraging year-round participation has been through hosting Meet n Greet events on O’ahu. During our visit, Andie Grace and I had the pleasure of attending a Meet n Greet at Bar 35 in Honolulu’s Chinatown. With a wide grin, Geoff told us about how the O’ahu Meet n Greets have, over the years, been a great way to bring local Burners together and to welcome visitors into the local Burner scene. “I get a call or email from a Burner several times a month. Sometimes they are just passing through but other times, they are new to the island and looking to connect,” Geoff beamed. “If there’s a beach burn or a Meet n Greet happening, I invite them. Otherwise, I make it a priority to meet up and show them around town.”

The twenty or so Burners that made it out for the Meet n Greet at Bar 35 ran the gamut from the seasoned Burner to the excited Newbie. As our luck would have it, Playarazzi Andy, a professional photographer who registers with us each year at Media Mecca, happened to be visiting O’ahu at the same time and made his way to Bar 35. Through chatting with other Burners at the Meet n Greet, Andy was able to get contact information for a local fire troupe whom he’d hoped to connect with and photograph during his stay on O’ahu. It seemed that other new friendships were being created and we ended the evening with a group photo (I will post photo asap for your enjoyment). Another Meet n Greet will likely be held next month and, as always, Geoff and Andi welcome any and all interested to attend.

Even though there are so many ways to get involved with the local Burner scene, Andi and Geoff explained that it can sometimes be difficult to get people together. On O’ahu, even the most ambitious and well-meaning Burners are easily distracted by the big waves and warm climate. But, Andi and Geoff are not easily discouraged. “We’ll continue to host gatherings and get the word out about what’s happening here,” Andi says, “and we’re always hoping more people will come out of the woodwork and make new things happen.”

After the crowd thinned out, we made our way back to the North Shore. Andi and Geoff seemed happy that the Meet n Greet had been so successful and also that they’d had the opportunity to “show off” all that O’ahu has to offer. Though Andie Grace and I were sad to leave O’ahu, we were looking forward to connecting with more Burners on our visit to the Big Island.

December 22nd, 2010  |  Filed under Participate!

Tis the Season: Burners Gifting Back

The spirit of generosity is in the air. Checkout lines are miles long, stockings are hung by the chimney with care, and our hearts (and our wallets) are open. While the world’s attention is so highly focused on gifting during this holiday season, Burners across the world are creating ways for their friends, family, and fellow Burners to gift back.

A Vegas Volunteer at the Hot Dog Stand Smiles Photo Courtesy of BamBam

This weekend, Andie Grace, our Communications Manager, and her husband Tom Price held a Christmas party at their home in San Francisco. Rather than having guests bring the obligatory bottles of wine and holiday trinkets, Andie and Tom turned their gathering into a diaper drive. Their party invite read, “All we want for Christmas is to fill the bathtub with diapers to donate. Please bring a package of disposable baby diapers of any size to help Bay Area babies in need via Help a Mother Out.” When I arrived with my baby wipes in tow, the tub was already half-full. Andie happily reports that she and Tom collected four big bags full of diapers to give to Help a Mother Out.

As I talked with Burners across the country this week, I found other examples of friends coming together during this hectic month to make a meaningful contribution to their local community.

Feeding the Homeless and Hungry in Las Vegas

On Sunday, December 19, 2010, a group of twenty-five Burners, their children, and friends served over 450 meals to the homeless and hungry of North Las Vegas.

Last year, on Christmas Eve of 2009, BamBam, a ten-year Burning Man veteran and owner of the mobile hot dog stand he calls “Hot Diggity Dog,” enlisted the support of his partner Pebbles and a few other friends and took his stand down to the corner of Las Vegas Blvd and Owens in North Las Vegas. That evening, the crew served over 250 meals of jumbo hot dogs, chips and sodas to the homeless and hungry. BamBam set up a canopy and a big sign that read “HOT DOGS” and watched lines form around the stand. Read more »

October 27th, 2010  |  Filed under Culture (Art & Music)

Regional Spotlight

If you Build It…

The ethos of the Burning Man community continues to spread far beyond the orange trash fence of Black Rock City. From coast to coast and out into the far reaches of cyberspace, Burners are creating the conditions for communal effort, radical self-expression, and public art.

Part 1: Asbury Park, New Jersey

"Momento Mori" in Asbury Park, NJ Photo by Marah Fellicce

Since back in the Spring, New Jersey Regional Contact Marah Fellicce has been participating in an interactive art piece she calls “Memento Mori.” On a vacant condo lot amidst the suburban sprawl of Asbury Park, New Jersey, Marah uses wood pilings as the base for large fabric wrappings. Marah says the pilings were drilled into the ground in 2005 on what was to be the site of a new complex but the pilings have remained unused as construction has yet to begin on the lot. The first pieces Marah created were a part of  “Sculptoure,” an annual outdoor urban sculpture exhibition presented by The Shore Institute for Contemporary Arts. The art work has continued to evolve since the May exhibition and has taken on a life of its own.

Superman, flamingos, and tikis, oh my! Photo by Ruby Re-Usable

Over the past several months, Marah has added elements to the football-sized art piece and has held space for others to participate in creating “Memento Mori.”  A local grafitti artist was inspired to contribute and painted bright tiki faces on many of the pilings. Reflecting the idea of constant change inherent in this temporary sculpture, passersby also rearrange rocks and leave contributions such as a prom dress with colored stencils, pink flamingos, a brightly colored Superman bust, and other found objects that become part of the artful display.The lot has become a place for locals to express themselves and the eclecticism of the project inspires conversations. A writer known online as “Wizard 343” from the website Weird New Jersey happened upon Marah’s work and, after talking with Marah, wrote a lovely article on the artwork, on Marah’s creative process and on how Marah relates her art to the Burning Man principles. For photos and a great story, visit http://tinyurl.com/marahnj.

October 7th, 2010  |  Filed under Events/Happenings

Celebrating Our New Year Across the World

I like to think of Burning Man as a family reunion. The Burn marks a time when we, being a colorful and vibrant family, come together to create a space for both celebration and reflection. If we’re lucky, we make the annual trek out to Black Rock City and re-emerge dust-soaked, full of new ideas, new relationships, our perspective shifted. We return to the default world only to start mentally preparing ourselves to return to Black Rock City next year.

Rakuville Temple Fireworks Photo by Linda Loca

So what happens when friends and family can’t make it back to our desert home for the Burn? How do they stimulate new ideas, new relationships, and personal growth?

Though technology has made it possible for thousands of wayward Burners to experience the Nevada event through simulcast, there is something that happens out in the dust that is hard to really feel anywhere else. Or so I thought.

Returning home, I began to talk with friends of mine about their off-playa experiences. Through these conversations, I started to realize that some of the more meaningful stories about the 2010 Burn that I was hearing didn’t happen out in the Nevada desert. The stories I loved the most were about the magic moments that happened when our wayward Burner friends came together to create a sense of home during the Burning Man event in cities all over the world.

This year, our beloved Bex Workman, who has participated heavily in Burning Man for over a decade was unable to make it to Nevada for the first time in 14 years.

Now living in London with her new husband Tom, Bex reports, “I admit that I kinda freaked out and started talking about Burning Man non-stop. The more I freaked, the more I talked to people, the more I learned that my fellow community members here in London were going through the same thing and weren’t going to the playa either.” Read more »

March 1st, 2010  |  Filed under Events/Happenings

Larry Harvey Speaks at the Regional Culture Mixer

If you’re into Burning Man culture and its place in the global community — and you live in the Bay Area — you’ll want to attend this great event on March 5th, including a thought-provoking talk by Larry Harvey.  Don’t worry if you can’t make it, plans are in the works to make the video of the speech available on the Burning Man website afterwards.

UPDATE: This event is now at capacity, and we’re no longer accepting RSVPs. Thank you!

Larry Harvey, photo by Scott London

Free Talk by Larry Harvey
and
The Convectional Caucus

A Burning Man Regional Culture Mixer
WHEN: Friday, March 5th, 5pm – 8:30pm
WHERE: Bently Reserve, 400 Sansome Street, SF

This is a free, private event.  If you wish to attend, you must RSVP to: caucus-rsvp here: caucus-rsvp (at) burningman.com

Join us for this very special event!  This social mixer is a rare opportunity to meet the visiting 100+ Regional Contacts and community leaders from all over the world! They will be in town to participate in the 4th Annual Regional Leadership Summit. Designed to strengthen and spread Burning Man’s culture, the Summit is an opportunity for the visiting Regionals to learn from one another and to be inspired by the Bay Area Burning Man community.

On display will be a cross-section of our cultural fabric from around the Bay Area. Community organizations, Burning Man departments, related non-profits, and art groups will be on hand to share their missions and goals for the future. They will be displaying materials expressive of their methodology for both Regionals and you to absorb and take home, inspiring growth in world-wide Burner culture and events.

At approximately 6:30pm, Larry Harvey will speak, addressing these issues as well as the future of Burning Man’s culture and community in this ever-changing world.  This is his first talk in the Bay Area in several years and is not to be missed.

We hope you’ll join us on the 5th to learn and share what you know. Help us take a monumental step into the future of our global culture!

This is a free and private event.

Because there are ONLY 500 spots available, PLEASE RSVP!

Please RSVP to caucus-rsvp here: caucus-rsvp (at) burningman.com

February 15th, 2010  |  Filed under Culture (Art & Music), Events/Happenings

Megs Eats World 2.1: Adventures in Australia

Melbourne Mural

Boarding the 14-hour flight to Sydney, Australia, a flurry of butterflies filled my belly. Though I’d been daydreaming about this trip for some time, it only now felt real. Stepping off this plane in Australia would put me farther than ever before from my family, friends, and community in San Francisco. However, the knowledge that I’d be welcomed into a network of Burners in Australia and New Zealand made the start of my journey much less intimidating, the gap between our continents that much smaller.

Maid Marian and I had crafted a tight itinerary for our travels abroad and had a lot to accomplish in a short amount of time. Our first mission was to connect with the movers and shakers behind the upcoming OzBurn Seed 2010, Australia’s first Regional Burn that will take place in June, 2010. Over the past several months, I’d shared countless conversations and emails with Burning Man Australian Regional Contact Robin and local community organizers Phil Smart and King Richard about the work they were doing to nurture the growth of the Burning Man community in Australia. Though I knew that the work they were doing was significant, from my desk in San Francisco—and without a background in Australian culture—I had a limited frame of reference through which to understand their experiences. By visiting them in Australia and connecting with the local Burning Man community, I hoped to gain the perspective I needed to comprehend what their contributions meant to the international Burning Man Regional Network.

View from our plane over Sydney: Photo by Maid Marian
View from our plane over Sydney Photo by Maid Marian

Read more »