We once again saw an overall increase in the number of art projects on playa in 2013, and it’s not altogether surprising given the burgeoning population of Black Rock City, and the incredible art crews that have grown out of the Burning Man experience over the years. We had roughly 382 projects placed on the open playa this year, another record number of art installations in Black Rock City (up from 360 in 2012).
The weather played a big factor for artists this year, with pre-event rainstorms knocking many for a loop as they worked to get their pieces installed on the playa. Luckily, the weather during the event itself was beautiful, affording participants the opportunity to experience the wonderful artistic creations spread throughout the open playa.
The ARTery is the Burning Man Art Department’s headquarters for processing art on the playa. The ARTery team works year round to anticipate all the challenges that go into creating art in a hostile environment, and to make the project registration process as smooth as possible.
Art Support is the Art Department’s liaison to DPW Support Services, coordinating heavy machinery for artists who need cranes, scissor lifts, trenchers and cherry pickers, making large-scale art possible. Fondly known as ASS, this team took a great leap forward in its composition, its focus, and its support of artists in 2013.
The Fire Art Safety Team (FAST) worked to ensure that artists who work with fire do so safely, whether it be open fire, flame effects or pyrotechnics. With approximately 49 large burns and hundreds of projects using flame effects, their skills were tested, but FAST kept the fires burning bright throughout the event.