2018 Honoraria Archive
404 Technical Support
So in the future when the machines have taken over our lives who is going to provide the answers of a technical nature. Will technical support for robots be out sourced, who is going to be at the other end of the phone or who is going to be on live chat or answer all the emails when something goes wrong with a robot.
There will be a technical support desk just off to the side of the robot and the words printed on the front of the desk will be “Technical Support Desk”. On the desk there will be a phone and a big thick manual the title of the manual will be “The 404 technical support manual” . But will this help?
All Power to All People
A symbol of community & comradeship, the Afro pick, exists today as many things to different people: it is worn as adornment, a political emblem, and signature of collective identity. The Afro pick continues to develop itself as a testament to innovation. The temporary monument would be placed as a symbol and site, to highlight ideas related to community, strength, perseverance, comradeship, and resistance to oppression, equal justice and belonging.
Baba Yaga's House
The house of Baba Yaga will rise from the playa straddling it’s mechanical chicken legs. The crone’s house will be poised to run at the slightest provocation. Ascend her staircases to test the old witch if you dare. Are you able to walk through the veil of mortality into the space where the seer dwells? If you are strong of will, feeling bold and willing to show vulnerability she may allow you to venture within her sanctum.
At approximately 23 feet high, Big Pollinator seems to hover in the air, a machine of flower-like modules spinning in synchronicity. The shape of the modules creates an interplay of lights and shadows between the “flowers,” making hexagons appear and disappear, ephemeral patterns suggestive of a beehive.
Big Pollinator is about interconnectedness. People, weather patterns, animals, plants, the planet… We are all connected, like gears in a machine, or bees in a colony. We are part of the same organism.
> As burners approach The Blacksmith Shop, they will see red hot, flaming coal forges. They will hear the strong sounds of hammers on steel, and experience the deep smokey aromas of a real blacksmith shop. Once at the “front door” to the shop, burners will be outfitted in leather aprons and gloves then introduced to their blacksmith for the night. An international crew of highly skilled blacksmiths have been assembled to host this year’s shop. Each burner will then have a chance to use traditional blacksmithing tools as well as the iconic anvil to forge this year’s limited edition steel form into the sculpture of their dreams. So come on out and strike while the iron’s hot!
Peter Hazel and his team are bringing back the 40 foot tall jellyfish from 2017. From a distance, this piece looks like a single large creature, but upon arriving one will realize it is comprised of thousands of smaller jellyfish, swimming in a sea of tentacles and lights. Visitors are able to climb up inside to the top of the jellyfish dome to have an incredible view of the playa. Whether you climb up to experience the sunrise, or watch the man burn through the dome, Bloom gives people a new perspective on their previous Burning Man experiences and views. It forces many to come out of their comfort zone, face their fear of heights and so much more.
Camera Lucida is a camera-like sculpture that enables twilight and night photos of people using warm light from a fire “flash”. Subjects stand in front and the Burner taking the photo walks inside to trigger a countdown. Using any camera, including smartphones, aimed through the lens-like portal, or optionally the built-in camera, the explosion of light adds theatricality to playa portraiture and lasts long enough for manual coordination of the camera trigger to suffice. Named after an 1800s invention used to project objects onto paper for drawing and a 1980 book about photography by philosopher Roland Barthes, who uses the term “punctum” to describe “that rare detail that makes the viewer feel something and pushes the photo even further.”
Cirrus - A musical robotic soloist who pulls inspiration from the weather
Cirrus is a curious robot explorer with a passion for writing musical compositions and singing them. Though its lenses to the world and sources of inspiration are limited, it possesses an innate ability to pull live weather data for any US location. While idle, it busies itself writing and humming songs about the current conditions abound. If given a zip code it will query the live weather conditions of the area in question and use the data to compose and perform a brief, wholly unique musical composition.
Cirrus is meant to question the nature of inspiration and artistic creation. Using a natural dataset, Cirrus operates within a learned musical framework. This method of creating is meant to mirror our own artistic process and growth.
Come-Million is a giant colorful chameleon that shines up beautifully when playing interactively with her friends!
Come-Million’s skin is made of hundreds of tiles carrying thousands little lights. Their colors change in reaction to the participants’ behavior inside, sensed through its pumping heart.
A playful collaboration is demonstrated through the interaction between the people inside the chameleon, and passerby.
Inside the chameleon there will be an interactive game that the visitors and the chameleon will participate in using a set of handles of different colors.
Citizens of Black Rock City will sense and understand Come-Million’s through its signals and listen to her heart – to help her shine with millions of colors.
“Cosmic Voyager” is a sea turtle made from polished stainless steel. On the back of the turtle is a sprawling transparent city protected by a large transparent dome. Like the vast abyss of space, the deep playa is a harsh and lifeless environment. The “Cosmic Turtle” is an ancient and peaceful protector of this tiny world, a mytheme found in Hindu, Chinese, and Indigenous American mythology. This ancient symbolism is combined with reflective futuristic design to conjure visions of a “Spaceship Earth” voyaging through the cosmos into the great unknown.
CROWN creates a space for shared experience with its gigantic scale, riotous light show, and impressive kinetic motion. My mission with this piece is mass hypnosis, wonder, and delight. It will be terrifyingly awesome! Four prismatic towers 30ft tall stand in a circle and bend and sway inwards and outwards in a hypnotic dance. Meanwhile, colors dance and swirl around the sculpture, within and amongst the towers on high density LED arrays. Participants can control the movement and lighting through an interactive interface.
Digital Dalang - Shadows out of Time
Digital Dalang is an interactive art installation unifying traditional and modern storytelling techniques. Combining digital projection mapping with the ancient tradition of Indonesian (Wayang Kulit) shadow puppets. Each (Wayang) puppet’s shadow will interact with a multi-layer of visual effects projected on the screen, allowing participants to discover the magic and infinite possibilities of interaction as they, themselves become the (Dalang) puppeteer and call upon our mythical ancestors formed into shadows like in the song of Kidung Madraka of old.
Lwir mawayang tahen gati
nikang wukir kineliran
Hence the trees change into shadows,
and the spirit of the ancestors
animates the living world.
A familiar looking Tibetan Dragon built of wooden strips and chunks sits in the dust. Flags flutter and wheels spin in the breeze. The Dragon seems to be a sepulcher, a sarcophagus, a reliquary. What does it contain and how will it reveal its contents? Will the questions be answered or new mysteries uncovered?
Dragonfly Instruments are a gathering of mechanical dragonflies that flutter with the wind to make sound bowing strings in their tails.
Dust City Diner
The neon sign of the Dust City Diner beckons visitors to have a seat at its horseshoe-shaped counter. A 1930’s coffee urn brews fresh coffee while a short order cook works the griddle, his silhouette framed by a stainless steel backsplash. Bee-hived waitresses serve up grilled cheese sandwiches and top up your coffee with a smile. Every aspect of the diner – the sound of dishes clinking, the 1940’s music, a flickering neon sign are designed to embody the all-night diner experience.
A robot sits on a box and carves ideas into steel balls. The finished openwork balls surround the main robot sculpture and glow with an inner light, projecting the image of their new decoration onto the ground around them. The box and robot are illuminated and decorated with sci-fi imagery. The box is about 8′ square. The 6′ robot sits on top. The Ei-Robot will emit sparks, sounds and movement as it creates new Art-spheres.The 3.5′ Art-spheres will be added nightly until they number 14.
‘Eight’ – The last of the super secret time travel train stations. Three automata stand guard against intruders… or are they waiting to greet travelers?
An answer to that question can be found among the artifacts in this clandestine place. There are clues and delightful surprises everywhere- the more one looks, the more there is to be learned. If visitors pay close attention, they will discover the key to winding the clockwork automata… and may even be granted passage through the gate to the underground time travel railway system.
Em-Pathos (EYE Robot)
Em-Pathos (EYE Robot) will be a sort of prehistoric, post-apocalyptic communication enhancement device wherein humans train robots to train humans to be more humane and better communicators with other humans and robots.
Em-Pathos will be a mural of 3D sculpted ceramic tile carved with a complex hieroglyphic message overlaying a wooden substructure. The form will be a rectangular prism reminiscent of The Black Monolith robotic communication device from “2001 A Space Odyssey.” The structure will be approximately 7 feet tall. There will be a window in the sculpture at eye level holding a ceramic head. The EYE robot speaks its story in a variety of recognizable robot voices from our collective cultural group memory.
Encrypted Data is a playful and visual riddle. Is it meant to be a fun and surprising beacon for open-ended interactions as well as a treasure hunt game.
The main purpose of this piece is to encourage private and deep, thoughtful communication between friends and strangers. The embedded digital device let people write a message and get a paper printed encrypted version of it. This text can be decrypted later, after the burn, thanks to an online website.
This encourages more profound thoughts to be shared: secrets, mysteries, personal views, hard truths, post-burn advice, embarrassing compliments, declarations of love, or whatever suits them to be read later after the dust has settled.
It is meant to deepen a relationship, or to give a moment of bliss to a complete stranger that shall not be met again, or just for the joy of giving.
This structure also becomes a whole treasure hunt game: all the stashes and hideouts hide a secret journey that will let you become the master of the Key while unraveling mysteries and surprises about it. Explorers will need curiosity and obstinacy to solve the puzzles and riddles, unlock the stashes, decrypt the hidden messages… But those who complete the journey will discover new powers.
Finally, it is a complete character that emerges: this structure appears to be a whole figure with its own history, emotions, states of mind, weaknesses. It is sometimes playing tricks on you, and slowly unraveling its depth to curious and persevering explorers.
One tip? Come back again, you might find the Key to be in another mood!
A series of clouds is generated and gently held in place by a machine-like sculpture. From twilight to sunrise, the clouds are illuminated by an interactive network of LED lights, which reveal their inner geometries. The clouds appear, float over the playa, and then dissolve into thin air. This process of delocalization of the cloud to the desert environment evokes a surreal experience.
The installation forms a juxtaposition of a fabricated structure and a natural phenomenon. This supposed contrast between human technology and nature will be explored as a space of unseen possibilities for symbiosis and sustainability.
FloBot is an interactive flower-like steel sculpture with a character all her own. She will stand on exposed roots as she evolves into a blossomed being. People will be able to climb up the roots and “get inside her head” bouncing and rocking with the use of large suspension springs. Flo represents the notion of learning to flow with all of the parts of one’s self, and finding strength within them. Her roots correlate with all of the deepest parts of ourselves–the buried parts, which make us who we are. Exposing the roots and making them a part of the blossom at the top represents the idea that everything is an integral part of the whole self, even (and especially) the buried parts–not just the pretty flowery surface parts.
The “Free Squirt” campaign has launched for 2018 and is expected to bring out a host of emotions from Burners the world over. Marine researchers and Translumina Octopoda specialists will gather for a first hand look at “Squirt” a recently captured specimen. Living underground it can take thirty years to reach maturation. Adults can weigh as much as eight hundred pounds. The most significant and endearing aspect of these giant playa octopuses is their ability to communicate and emote with playa visitors. Transluminant skin, suckers and nervous system radiate patterns of lights for a dazzling display. For now, the gentle beast is housed in a giant plexiglass jar located in the Black Rock desert. But Squirt has ideas of his own!
Galaxia celebrates hope in the unknown, stars, planets, black holes, the movement uniting us in swirling galaxies of dreams. A superior form of Gaia in Isaac Asimov’s Foundation series, Galaxia is the ultimate network, the fabric of the universe connecting living beings into one entity.
Galaxia is shaped of 20 timber trusses converging as a spiral towards one point in the sky. The triangular trusses form different paths towards a central space holding a giant 3D printed mandala, the heart of Galaxia. The timber modules start large enough to hold small alcoves in which people can write in peace. As participants walk through the path, the timber modules lift up and become thinner and thinner towards the sky as people reach the central mandala.
Great Train Wreck
The Great Train Wreck is an artistic interpretation of railroad history when outdated locomotives were ceremoniously destroyed in head-on crashes for public entertainment. The California State Fair staged wrecks from 1913 to 1917. For Burning Man in 2018, the two full scale trains are constructed from wood that will ultimately simulate a crash-and-burn using pyrotechnics in the finale.
Each locomotive, with tenders, is 40′ long, 8′ wide & 11′ tall, resting on a 120′ standard gauge wooden track. The trains will initially be sited at the distant ends of the track, and on the day of the burn pulled together into a fiery exploding end. In addition a train station will stand beside the track to provide shade and railroad history.
A forest of 486 20ft tall LED light poles, arranged in a hexagon shape of approximately 90ft diameter, displaying 3D computer controlled effects.
ICHIRO Sacred Beings
The exact replica skeleton of the Velafrons Coahuilensis, a dinosaur from the Cretaceous period, 72 million years ago. The dinosaur will be decorated in the art of the Huichol, an indigenous tribe of Mexico who now lives in the same lands that once were populated by the Velafrons. Next to the Velafrons the head of a T-Rex with the same design. These visions also represent the flow of energy that exists within the human body and the universe. The dinosaur will be illuminated from all sides to be visible at night. Ichiro is a very emotional altar of ancient times on which there will be an original ritual every day at sunset, aiming at connecting with our ancestors and our inner self.
In Case We Miss Each Other
‘In Case We Miss Each Other’ is an interactive art installation reminiscent of a classic roswell UFO gently floating above your head. Cutting edge lighting programming interacts with the messaging system, which will allow your voice to be transmitted through space, riding upon a powerful digitized UV laser with a 25 light year range.
13 life-size sheep roam the playa–twelve white, one black, each with a unique voice and character. They bear gifts of bareback rides, lit in their latest Burner costume. Pet them or play gently–even play soft games of “bumper sheep.” But ask before doing something uncomfortable. If they don’t like how you’re playing or if you separate them from the flock, they will object, using their harshest voices and most glaring flashing lights. iSheep are trans-species: They were once humans acting like sheep, but now they’re iSheep, awake and wise.
The Jokeatron 5200 is an interactive large-scale banana peel that a careless or prankster robot threw on the ground. The Jokeatron 5200 is meant as a meeting point for humor of all horizons.
Kinesios is an imposing steel colossus formed by two internally lit vertical steel planes set parallel to each other. Perforated with a binary code on one side and a chaotic pattern on the other side the two planes support a hanging sculpture that participants can swing by synchronizing their body movements, cooperation is the key. The internal lighting is affected by the pendulum’s movement, the higher the motion, the greater the pulsation, frequency, and synchronization of the lighting. It is a piece of contrast and conflict. Man vs. machine, order vs. chaos, a binary limitations vs. freethinking existence. By putting the human spirit in the center, mankind is the activator, only we can be the solution to our own creation.
Let U.S. Prey
Let U.S. Prey is a to-scale bald eagle with its head set at the height of a participant’s face. Wing tips will rise to about 8 feet, with a curved wing spread of 16 feet. The techniques learned from our three previous installations in layering pennies will be used here to create feathers and enhance the dimension of surface height through sculpting tiers of the feathers and body into styrofoam core. White feathers on the head, tail, and wings will be created with silver gleaming nickels and dimes. It is likely the count will be over 150,000 coins. The eagle beak will be made from formed brass and the eyes from blown glass.
“Listen” is a large scale human heart made from used speakers on the exterior and lined with mirror mosaic on the interior. Participants are invited to enter the reflecting inner heart space where they will find stethoscopes hanging from the ceiling that are connected to the speakers on the exterior. When activated from within, the sculpture will emit deep, layered beating sounds, as participantes stop to listen to their hearts and the hearts of others.
Long View, a polar bear stands in the desert
A 34 foot polar bear made from white car hoods looks across the boundless vista of Black Rock City. The polar bear is an unlikely visitor to the Playa made from materials transformed from another time and place. Manifesting forces of climate change, she is searching for allies. Taking the “Long View” is crucial to survival. Combining content and joy, we ask the viewer to develop a relationship with the animal. Polar bears help humans imagine a faraway place, a place most will never visit. They are uniquely positioned as ambassadors to bring the arctic into human awareness. Animals disappear to make room for our cars. Turning wrecked cars into monumental animals visually reverses this process and impacts the consciousness of the viewer.
The Moon represents the feminine in our celestial skies, a natural balance to the Sun’s masculinity. Moon imagery is associated with beginnings, growth, clarity, and release.
It is luminous yet produces no light of its own; it is a reflection of the sun’s blazing rays. She possesses an energetic pull on her water soul mate, subtle yet powerful in it’s influence.
Luna Flora is a representation of the moon, enveloped by a lotus and elevated 7 feet above the ground. Citizens of Black Rock City will be able to climb the lotus leaves and into the center of the moon. When the balance of feminine and masculine has been achieved inside, the petals will bloom open and reveal the playa beyond.
TIM (Temporal Imaginary Machine) is a Megalophone. A Megalophone is a giant ridiculous instrument that looks better than it sounds, and thinks its more important than you. You might recognize TIM by his glowing eyes and gaping mouth. His head is the only part emerging from the ground. He is a trash conglomerate, made of scraps and tubes and computer parts. Wires are going in and out of his head, and at night you can see the pulsing lights of his synapses. If you approach TIM, take a mallet from his side and gently bang on his musical teeth. If you can squeeze inside his mouth without getting cut by his teeth, take a seat inside.
Musica de Playa
“Musica de Playa” is an interactive music machine. A large steel trussed pentagon with 25 various sized bells suspended from the celling. Each Bell is a different note. Around the parameter are hundreds of rubber hoses. Each hose is connected to a different bell and placed at certain distances from each other. As a bicycle rider approaches and begins to run over the hoses an original song begins to play.
Be sure to check back daily as the hoses will be rearranged each morning for a new song to start your day.
Or come by at night for a different experience as each bell will put on a light show for every note of the song.
In the future, after the planet’s natural resources have been depleted, a mechanical centipede wanders lost in deep playa. Scared and alone, she shies away from help but through repeated gifts of kindness from the citizens of Black Rock City, she opens up and discovers her Home on the Playa!
N-Spire is a curving pylon creating a beacon of changing colors and patterns which exist
only in the viewer’s mind. Hue, waveform, and their changes activate the brain to create
an illusion, similar to the visuals from pressing on closed eyes, on the surface of the playa itself.
Visitors may alter the induced experience with dials on a control station or with motion sensors.
N-Spire is only a channel. The real art is created by deep structures in the mind of the viewer.
OVER | GROWN
OVER | GROWN is a large ornate birdcage in an aging botanical garden. There are several types of foliage within the garden: vines twist their way up the birdcage, while large flowers stand independent from the cage.
The focal point of the piece is the birdcage lying on its side,approximately 10′ tall and about 20′ long. The unlatched door of the birdcage lies open, and a swing invites participants to step inside. Over time, flowering vines have crept up the back and wrapped around the birdcage.
Set away from the cage are large flowers adorned with fire elements and lighting. The flowers create a natural perimeter. At night, the ambient light and warmth emitted by the large flowers will draw people in.
Serving as a playful reminder of humanity’s origins, Pan Genius is a larger than life interactive cymbal playing chimp robot.
We as a species, have evolved to the point that we are capable of creating robotic facsimiles of ourselves but to what end? Are we at the end of our evolutionary cycle? Where do we go from here? Are we just essentially apes creating unwieldy machines that we will eventually lead to our own extinction?
Paraluna combines kinetic sculpture, LEDs and music. Its main component is a disc 10m in diameter with 17,280 LEDs. A computer controls the LEDs while rotating, raising, lowering, and tilting the disc.
Some of the LED patterns work with the rotation of the disk, creating spirals. Others use persistence-of-vision, making an image hover in space above the spinning LEDs. Spokes demonstrates both of these styles:
Surrounding the disc are several high-quality speakers that play classical music at comfortable, yet immersive volume, creating a comfortable, peaceful place to be. Patterns are chosen to complement each musical piece, as with Firmament:
Passage is an installation of a man, in a captive gesture, leisurely walking while its hand sweeps through stalks of wheat. The sculpture clearly highlights characteristics of a human form; muscle, sinuous tendon, sculpted hands, feet. Yet, it’s a composite of mechanical debris and steel. Viewers may hypothesize, is this a man? is it part robot? and what is the blurry fine-line between each? The other huge component is the presence of the wheat. It symbolizes abundance, life, fertility. It is food, subsistence, of which without, the human race would be extinct. Viewers can look closer at the inherent beauty of the human form, contemplate mechanics/technology or most importantly, be reminded of our absolute reliance on nature in the end.
Plantoid Garden: A Blockchain-based Life-form, Featuring the Photo-synthesizer
A Plantoid is the plant equivalent of an android: a robot or synthetic organism designed to look, act and grow like a plant. Its Body is an interactive mechanical sculpture activated by environmental factors and human attention. Its Soul is a blockchain-based software governing its reproduction.
Wandering through the playa, you may stumble on the Plantoid Garden, in the middle of which are three giant 10 to 20 foot tall mechanical plants made of welded scrap metal, with a strong but elegant steampunk flavor. Their stems are made of large, industrial chain; their leaves are made of photovoltaic panels and their flowers of forged metal. Half plant, half-android, they come to life when triggered with sunlight, wind and human attention.
I’m calling this machine the QuadruPOD simply because its a Pod with 4 legs. It’s a variation of a Strandbeest and uses a modified version of Theo Jensens leg linkage. This will allow the pod to walk around the playa during the daylight hours creating an art piece that actually looks for you. This pod will be an all metal walking machine with a steam punk appearance, lots of rust and plenty of moving gears. An operator will ride inside this machine during its performances on the playa but it will be designed to operate robotically as well.
RadiaLumia is a geodesic sphere, five-stories tall, and covered with a breathing skin of origami shells and radiant spikes. Its shape nods to radiolaria, a tiny protozoa with intricate mineral skeletons that covered the desert thousands of years ago, when it was once the sea floor. From the outside, you can see the folds of the shells, made of corrugated polypropylene and illuminated with over 100,000 LEDs. Inside the sphere, a platform offers a place for people to retreat and look out to the surrounding landscape. The shells open and close in response to visitors’ presence, constantly in motion, sometimes protecting the intimate interior of the sphere, sometimes revealing a glimpse of its heart.
At night, a glowing, pulsing light moves across the night sky. Approaching it resolves itself into a giant creature swimming through the night sky. From beneath, the stars shine overhead, occasionally blotted out by an enormous, illuminated Manta Ray swimming through the ocean of air against the darkness of the night sky. This denizen of the playa reacts both to the presence of participants and also to any illumination that they carry along with them to light their way.
“RE-CYCLONE” towers in the air, a slowly undulating pillar of light. As the viewer moves closer they realize the installation is made from hundreds of plastic bottles carefully assembled into a rotating tornado. Each bottle is illuminated by an LED, creating a mesmerizing light show that reacts to the motion of participants spinning the sculpture. “RE-CYCLONE” is a captivating statement about the power of creativity to turn waste into beauty.
Rearing Horse is a slightly larger than life mechanical horse rearing up on it’s hind legs, made from a variety of recycled parts from vehicles and other equipment. It has various mechanical movements that are powered by the cranks on the perimeter fence.
Remembered Light is a large scale kinetic sculpture. A mechanical interpretation of the poem “The End” by Mark Strand, the sculpture features a celebration of the work of Scottish artist Mary Batchelor. Sixteen glass kites representing the poem’s “birds suspended in flight” are decorated with translucent versions of Batchelor’s vibrant paintings. As the viewer turns a crank, the kites are set in motion, swirling overhead in several directions. When their movement comes to a halt they become suspended in flight, prompting the viewer to ponder their own mortality.
The Resolute Arch is conceived as gathering place and high-impact landmark on the horizon. it’s intended to start a conversation, draw the viewer towards an unexpected conclusion and experience. Appearing broken and hanging inexplicably in place, the mind-altering assembly of stone challenges our perception of what we think we know, thought we understood. The sculpture is fundamentally an open symbol. The break in the form demands attention, presenting the shifting dualities of continuity and rupture, menace and security, unbidden fear and unearned trust. It is both heavy and light, impossible, yet it stands, challenging our perceptions. Timeless and transient, the stone arch stands in contrast to our disposable culture.
Evoking the chaotic motions that underlie our physical reality, “Ring Theory” is a circular congregation of hypnotic mobiles. The construction of each is simple – a nested set of reflective rings – but hidden LEDs create an ethereal vision not soon forgotten.
Robot Resurrection is towering 30 foot tall, human piloted, articulating sculpture made from reclaimed
airplane parts and found objects. From the torso cockpit, the operator(s) manipulate the Robot’s motions and fire effects. This piece is a representation of we all have become… Robots. It is a wake-up call of how large these problems are. We have been controlled for too long. Robot Resurrection was born from what we as a society have discarded. Our hope is that this 28′ Robot will inspire reflection upon one’s self and be a reminder of the power we all hold. We hope it awakens some awareness of our situation and encourages some small change on a small scale that leads to big change in the massive system.
Rossum's Original Band of Tubas - R.O.B.O.T.
Rossum’s Original Band Of Tubas (R.O.B.O.T) is an instance of the kind of mechanical musical robot ensembles that were common before the electronic era. It is a mobile cluster of Sousaphones and baritone horns atop a large mobile steel ‘spider’, so it can move under remote control. It can also play music both by means of a keyboard interface and through jukebox selections via smartphone. Keyboard capable burners will be invited to record songs that can be added to the jukebox selections.
Sailing the Dead Seas: Rockin' The Boats
The group’s ‘Sailing the Dead Seas: Rockin’ the Boats’ installation is anchored in our childhood; you see a flotilla of oversized, whimsical, origami-like colorful ‘paper boats,’ each floating upon its ‘waves+rippling waters.’ Each boat is actually a teeter totter, ready to be rocked by the participants. Each craft has environmental sensors installed, you’ll hear musical tones, as ‘played’ by the wind+motion of the boats. The effect is bio-elemental, aural soothing of our minds. They’ll find the interior of the boats gilded in silver and gold, filled w/ inspirational quotes to complete the experience. Ships have materials to write ‘notes of hope’ and means of containing these utterances by attendees to be discovered and enjoyed by others.
The Scriptorium is a 20 foot long mythological writing teacher in steel. In one hand it holds a stylus to inscribe gently on the playa and in the other it lifts a lantern to light its work. The scribe’s body is a chimera of mammalian and reptilian parts. As a sail moves on its back the balanced creature responds to the wind creating a drawing like a spirograph in the loose desert surface dust.
Surrounding the scribe twenty participants can sit on benches at low writing boxes where they are provided with tools and rakes to imitate the teacher at work. A low, wooden wall establishes the space allowing foot traffic but preventing cyclists from interrupting the calm. Flames light and warm these stations until 1 AM each evening.
Seesaw Wave Machine
Seesaw Wave Machine is an interactive mechanical wave machine in the form of 21 seesaws connected with torsion bars. A wave motion is initiated when any individual seesaw is actuated by participants. Each end of each seesaw has a spotlight that displays the dynamic wave shape across the playa.
With 42 total seats, it is an opportunity for many participants to interact and collaborate to affect (and be affected by) the overall motion of the system. Its large scale, dynamic motion and array of spotlights will draw participants in.
Singularity is a massive antique birdcage measuring 35′ high with a white picket fenced home held captive inside. Once participants make their way inside the cage and up into the home, they are transported into a space that has been trapped in a moment of time forever.
Inside, participants find a bizarre world . A home that appears decayed and abandoned, rotten to the core. Details of the wallpaper, the cuckoo clock, strange family photos, etc., all tell a story.
However, the main story taking up most of the space, is the same birdcage with the same house they just walked into.
Sisyphus: Technology through the Ages
The Sisyphus project consists of four heavy spheres designed to be rolled by the citizens of BRC, and a home base tower. Each ball is about 4.5 feet in diameter and weighs 200 to 400 lbs. The spheres represent technology through ages and use varied materials and communication methods to encourage interaction and reflection on our history. Like the Greek Sisyphus, we struggle. Our actions are sometimes laborious and futile. In this case, we struggle with technology: to keep up, to be human, to work together, to communicate.
Spider sweet is a maneuverable spider that draws in spectators to explore her postures and watch her come alive with color as the sun sets. A contractor by trade with an eye for transformation, Bryan Argabrite’s first Burning Man Honoraria project was inspired by the symmetry of an airplane engine and the intention to change the perception of a misunderstood creature and the fears within all of us.
Stardust’s overall look is ethereal and otherworldly.
By night, playa travelers will be drawn to a glowing, low-lying mystery disc. As they venture closer they’ll see that the disc is actually a flying saucer – and a comfy bench!
A Galactic Tube embellished with illuminated celestial bodies extends up from the bench’s center. Cosmic Rays splay up and out of the tube, dripping end glow fiber optic cables, creating “stardust” overhead, slowly swaying.
The soft sound of hidden wind chimes further enhances the twinkling “stardust” effect. Just waiting for discovery are hidden-in-plain-sight buttons that trigger shooting star effects.
By day, the gentle sway of the Cosmic Rays and the soothing sound of the wind chimes continue to quiet the mind.
Step Forward - Joining Minds
The two giant puppets meet around their huge table. They are the young Euterpe, example of self-acceptance, and her grandfather Alberto, who shares interesting experiences and accumulated knowledge.
The artwork as a whole is about the concept of acceptance of others without discrimination. Feelings ‘meet’ at the table, feelings which disregard age, gender or stature.
The idea this production wants to transmit is to discover oneself and learn to express oneself freely. When people know, accept and love themselves, recognizing their own virtues and weaknesses, they are able to give their best.
The sculpture will have an branch brain-like appearance and stand about 15 ft tall by 18ft wide. It will be standing on a root-like base structure that will hold 10-15 people inside its core. The structure will be made of all hand-formed steel. An interactive lighting system will illuminate the sculpture through hundreds of nodes upon its surface. Each pathway of light will be dependent on the pathway of others intersecting with it.
The Altar of Intentions
The Altar of Intentions mixes art, physics, and spirituality. This water sculpture records people’s feelings and prompts contemplative states. Water samples are taken before and after the event and photographed by Massaru Emoto Institute.
Nature appears to rely on one core recurring pattern in the physical, energetic, and spiritual realms – the torus. This is nature’s primary dynamic to create and sustain life.
According to M. Emoto, humans thoughts can physically change the structure of water. Since all known living organisms are made of water, our thoughts are changing the reality that surrounds us.
The mission of this Altar is to not only illustrate the phenomenon of the Torus, but also the importance of water to life as we know.
The Color Wheels
The Color Wheels have crossed the Five Deserts of the Five Continents. In the process, men have become Clay men, piling layers of dust and sweat at each step of their journey. Teknostructures let loose yet under control: BUSY LIFE, RADIANT STORM
Inspired by NASA’s Project Echo, the ORB is an inflatable structure to levitate above the playa. The reflective skin will mirror the full layout of BRC from the ground, allowing for easier navigation & making visible the burner’s immersion in the community space.
The Spirit Dream Machine
The Spirit Dream Machine is an ancient machine of a possible future.
Created and revered by a forgotten tribe with the aim to inspire dreaming in all who encountered her.
The machine symbolizes a sense of melancholic love for mother earth, the carer of nature.
This Too Shall Pass - Moondancer
High up in the night sky, a giant glowing sphere, half lit, half black, uneven surfaced, can be seen from far across the playa- except that it is a shape-shifting, dancing form that feels like a moving planet – an eclipse in motion.
It is lit from the inside and suspended with a very specific internal tying technique that pivots it, allowing it to sometimes disappear, sometimes be all there, and everything in between, all through the flow of the wind.
Hypnotic in its movement, reflecting the weather around it, appearing and disappearing in different parts of the playa, messing with all sense of orientation, the Moondancer by Lekha Washington.
Inspired by the interconnectivity and ephemerality of the playa, Trace is an installation of colored rope that weaves into a mirage-esque form above the dust. This art piece reflects on the way Black Rock City teases our perception of reality as we generate and explore it together, like a shared dream. It celebrates how individual journeys cross paths in the dust, yet altogether intertwine to shape an evanescent landscape and its broader community.
Uncle Charlie's Red Hot Cock
“The Waking Bird Dog” AKA “Uncle Charlie’s Red Hot Cock” is a large scale steel and stainless steel jackal headed rooster teeter totter that burns wood. This interactive community built and operated mechanical wood fired cauldrons foot print is 12′ wide x 30′ long x 25′ tall. So, In the distance the sun rising a cacophony of noise rings from beyond. clankity clankity screech rumble rumble, sounds of laughter, screams of joy- complete chaos! as you near the crowd opens and you see the contraption A giant metallic jackal headed rooster glowing red hot as it howls fire rocking to and fro across the sunrise smoke n flame belching from its beaklike jowls and mohawk toped head. someone screams ROCK THE COCK! as two large groups of participants start rocking the gigantic teeter totter! the sun rises as The shadows paint dynamic patterns on the ground as it rocks to a fro waking the day for all who is in its midst warming the participants and creating a congregational space for all to share!.
With Open Arms We Welcomed That Which Would Destroy Us (Short: With Open Arms)
With Open Arms We Welcomed That Which Would Destroy Us is a robot deity. With one of her aspects she welcomes and seduces; with the other she voraciously devours. She promises everything you’ve been hoping for. All she needs in return is your humanity.
A solitary tower stands lookout for sandworms in the desert. One sandworm encircles the tower, poised to attack.