What to Expect if You Receive a Temple Grant

Significant Dates for 2024 Temple Artists

  • December 2023: 2024 Temple selected and artists notified
  • January/February 2024: Temple artists fill out Art Installation Questionnaire and attend Kick-off Meeting with Burning Man Artist Liaison 
  • February/March: Kick-off meetings with major stakeholders including Burning Man’s Fire Art Safety Team (FAST), Communications department, Temple Guardians, and the Temple Builders Guild
  • February/March: Contract signed and first payment is issued.
  • April/May/June: Monthly calls with Burning Man Artist Liaison
  • June 1: Art Support Services (ASS) resource request due
  • July 1: Crew members finalized, names for tickets, work access passes, and vehicle passes submitted
  • July/August: Weekly calls with Burning Man Artist Liaison
  • Wednesday, August 7: Work access to site for survey, no on-site overnight camping
  • Thursday, August 8: Work access to set up camp, overnight camping commences
  • Friday, August 9: First day of delivery of construction materials and scheduled heavy equipment support and resources become available
  • Thursday, August 22: Relocation of worksite camp to city camp
  • Sunday of event opening, sunrise: Temple is fully installed and turned over to participants and Temple Guardians
  • Sunday of event opening, 6pm: Burning Man event officially begins
  • Sunday before Labor Day: Temple is turned over to the burn crew and Temple Guardians as early as 8am
  • Sunday before Labor Day: Temple burns at 8pm
  • Monday, Labor Day: Burning Man event officially ends, Temple crew begins Leave No Trace (LNT)
  • Thursday after Labor Day: Temple project completes LNT operations of the installation and build site
  • October 1: Final report (Artist Feedback Form) and high-resolution images due
  • November 15: On-playa services and resources accounted for and remaining performance deposit issued

Questionnaires and Contract

  • The Temple artist must sign a written agreement (i.e., a contract) with Burning Man Project which establishes terms for the management and execution of the project from conception through installation, deinstallation, and clean up. The contract also outlines the support services and coordination that will be provided by Burning Man. Note that Burning Man must report Temple grant payments to the IRS with form 1099-MISC; the entity or individual receiving them may wish to consider the tax and other financial implications of receiving this grant money. Some Temple projects choose to form an LLC or other organization. Burning Man Project cannot give specific legal or tax advice, and encourages artists to seek professional counsel.
  • The Temple artist must submit a standard Art Installation Questionnaire and coordinate and comply with all Art Department requirements for playa art. The Temple grantee will be assigned an Artist Liaison who will serve as the main point of contact for the Temple project lead regarding all issues of Temple build management. Art Department staff will coordinate all support services
  • Temple artists are expected to submit a Placement Questionnaire requesting an Art Support Camp in order to have a placed camp in Black Rock City.

On-Playa Resources

Burning Man Project makes certain on-playa resources available for purchase by the Temple artists. These items are requested pre-event, confirmed by ASS, and delivered at the event.

Some services that Burning Man may supply for the installation of the Temple include heavy equipment, decomposed granite (DG), potable water, firewood, fuel (dyed diesel, clear diesel, gasoline, propane), dumpster services, and porta-potties at the build site. The cost of these resources are covered in part by a supplemental resource grant of $15,000, with the balance subtracted from the Performance Deposit (a predetermined hold-back of the Temple grant). In addition, Burning Man Project may offer the use of a large solar shade structure capable of powering a moderate light design for the Temple. However, this is subject to additional requirements such as abstaining from using fuel-powered generators for the build on playa. All preliminary requests for services and materials will be discussed during kick-off meetings. A tracking of on-playa resource use will be shared post-event.

Other Expectations

  • Meetings: Being a Black Rock City Temple artist requires a significant time investment, including many mandatory meetings with Burning Man Project staff. Plan for frequent collaboration and interactions.
  • Early Arrival: The Temple must be completed by sunrise on the Sunday that the event begins. The Temple build crew must be available to arrive on playa early enough to meet this deadline, and crew arrivals will be staggered during the pre-event period. In the kick-off meeting, we will determine an exact number of Work Access Passes (WAPs) by date for the project.
  • Departure: Burn site DG must be cleared of anything that is not DG in order to be considered adequately cleaned per the terms of our BLM permit. The site should be cleaned and ready for inspection by Playa Restoration’s LNT Lead no later than the Thursday after Labor Day.
  • Timeliness and Deadlines: As part of our collaboration to bring major artworks such as the Temple to life, we make requests throughout the year. We ask that artists respect our deadlines and be as prompt as possible in responding to our requests. If an artist cannot make a deadline, we ask that they let us know as quickly as possible; it may be possible to negotiate a slightly different date.
  • Significant Changes: If the Temple artist wants to make any significant changes to their Temple design from what we have agreed to fund, they must contact us in writing and receive our approval in writing prior to March 31 (and preferably earlier). We know there are changes and evolutions to installations as things move from concept to reality, and we want to make sure we are in the loop about any requested changes. 
  • Radical Inclusion: Assembling a crew to build the Temple is different from recruiting a team for other BRC art installations. The Temple is a deeply personal space, and participants are motivated by many different reasons to volunteer to build the Temple. The Temple belongs to the community and as such, the build crew will include a wide range of community members with a wide range of skills. Also note that the Temple should ideally be constructed in such a way that people of all abilities can access it.
  • Stakeholder Engagement: The Temple is not a solo project; the lead artist(s) should expect to collaborate with various community stakeholders who have deep ties with the Temple, for example the Temple Guardians and the Temple Builders Guild.
  • Rituals and Traditions: As the spiritual center of our city, there are rituals and traditions at the Temple, such as the pre-event Paiute blessing, which we request the artist accommodate.

Required Reading

As you continue planning for your project, please read the information found here if you haven’t already: