Support Services

The Art Support team had several additional members this year, and our team- and process-organization improved to support it. Moving forward, we will be working with the issues of non-hierarchical delegation, flexible team scheduling, as well as appropriate meeting schedules and attendance for the coming years.

Two new sets of responsibilities were added to Art Support in 2009: cone wrangling (the management of safety cones related to dangerous art performance) and Eyes On Art (the onsite effort to help artists be mindful of safety related to their projects). These were integrated into the Art Support task structure fairly well. We expanded individuals’ roles to include these functions, a challenge which the team was able to handle gracefully.

Having fewer team members means each has a greater workload. It became clear in 2009 that it’s crucial to have a minimum number of team members and just the right amount of structure to sustain a healthy and effective team environment. And, the people who make up the team help shape the nature of the team’s overall flexibility and adaptability. And working from the improvements made over the past few years, 2009 proved to be the most interesting and fun year to participate as Art Support. Thanks to all the volunteers who put their hearts into their efforts.

Art Support put more emphasis on interdepartmental communications in 2009, as new challenges were identified and managed in real time.The coordinated effort of the Support Services (aka Heavy Machinery) team and the Art Support team will always need refinement in order to provide an ever more seamless and timely response to artists’ needs. Communications between these two teams will be an ongoing focus.

The event changes every year in a variety of ways, yet certain aspects stay the same. As we move forward, Art Support is getting better and better at handling the main tasks, and the team adapts well to the minor changes that crop up, allowing us to support Burning Man’s artists. 2009 was again an exciting year to be involved with the growth of Black Rock City. The Art Support team left the playa exhilarated by the event, and we all look forward to co-creating the next iteration!

Submitted by:
Roger Ripps