See our 2019 Burning Man State-of-the-art coverage for more information
The day is almost upon us! Here’s the installation art we are most looking forward to seeing on the playa:
The Folly — Dave Keane and Folly Builders — San Francisco, CA
We love large scale art, and the Folly fits that bill. “The Folly is an old shanty village of towers, bridges and little western store fronts. Cobbled together from salvaged and reclaimed lumber from old San Francisco victorians and reborn in the desert, The Folly will afford shelter, entertainment and visual perspective to Black Rock City residents.” The art will be the stage for many performance, and look for hidden rooms and other surprises…
The Wheels of Zoroaster Resurrection — Anton Viditz-Ward — Telluride
Welder, architect, artist, Anton Viditz-Ward works out of an abandoned mine several miles outside of Telluride Colorado, which is pretty bad ass. His work, often accompanied by a fire performance, is something we have loved in the past. He’s returning this year with a new take on a prior project and we’re thrilled to see how it shapes up.
I.L.Y. — Dan Mountain — Portola Valley, CA
I.L.Y.. is a 35 foot tall sculpture with many surprises hidden inside, from Burning Man alum Dan Mountain. Daily fire shows and a large pyrotechnics display one evening will cap off the installation,
Mariposita — Chris Carnabuci — Cold Spring, NY
Chris has previously created a smaller scale egg as part of the Fabergé Big Egg Hunt New York in 2014. He will bring a larger version of this concept to the playa in 2019.
Mariposita, or Little Butterfly, is a 26 foot tall sculpture depicting a female figure emerging from a newly hatched egg, grasping the edge of the shell and propelling herself forward. The piece represents transformation and rebirth.
Paraluna — Christopher Schardt — Oakland, CA
Paraluna is always one of our favorites, and it’s back this year. Haunting music, beautiful visuals and suspiciously cuddly people laying below it.
Phoenix Rising — Lisa Nigro and Draka Arts — San Antonio, TX
A wonderful artist brings large art and larger pyrotechnics to the playa in 2019. From Lisa:
Phoenix Rising is an interactive fire sculpture made of steel and repurposed materials. She will look much like the mythical bird - a hybrid between rooster and peacock - and contain a complex flame effects system, so that visually one will see and feel the heat of a giant Bird on FIRE! The interactive element involves the placement of a pulse sensor to one’s finger in order to detect the heartbeat. This sensor remotely triggers a signal to the sculpture’s fire effects system and causes the flames of the bird’s wings to pulse in unison with the beat of the participant’s heart. There will be two people at a time participating, and if at any one moment their hearts beat in unison, the large flame emanating from the bird’s mouth will be triggered to go off.
The Flaming Lotus Girls are among our favorite art collective, and they are back this year with Serenity. From the artists website: “SERENITY is an immersive sculpture made of metal, fire, light, and sound. A large broken jar supports three giant fireflies, featuring interactive fire and LED illumination at night. Around the jar pieces are smaller fireflies that glow with LED light in a coherent color pattern and add to the whimsical nature of the piece. Cozy wooden benches are nestled in the jar pieces, offering sheltered places to linger, while subtle sounds permeate the space, adding to the immersive experience, both at night and during the day. Interacting with these fireflies feels magical, it brings you a sense of warmth and belonging.”
We’ve been watching this piece shape up for almost a year, and we like what we are seeing. These folks do fire well, and this project will be doing fire in grand style.
No Place Like Home — Trey Watkins, Mara Greenberg, Alan Becker and Frogma — San Francisco, CA
In 2019, they intend to expand their work with an installation featuring a farm house in poor repair, with a whimsical path leading to a fire feature.
The Shrine of Sympathetic Resonance — Tyson Ayers and Sympathetic Resonances — Oakland, CA
The Shrine of Sympathetic Resonance immerses participants in the phenomena of 20,000 musical strings sympathetically resonating the sounds they make while inside. The wonder & joy induced by this experience invites participants to play with their own sounds by singing, laughing, crying, or howling.
The Head Maze - Matthew Schultz, The Pier Group - Sparks, NV
Head Maze is a 4 story mediating mind, resting on one hand and ripping its face off to reveal a crystalline stained glass being. Inside of the mind is an immaculate interactive 4 story, 18 room maze of our subconscious and dreams.
The Man… and the Temple (maybe)
Two of the largest works of art are often overlooked in the “best of” articles. This years man design is smaller than past years, but we love the look and are excited to see it on the playa. More than anything we are excited to see it burn. The lattice work on the spiraling egg should ignite spectacularly.
The Temple is more of a question mark for us. On first glance, you author was somewhat disappointed, especially after the beautiful design of 2018. But after conversations with the builders and members of the org, I am now very much looking forward to seeing the temple on playa. The inside will be spacious, far larger than last years’. The design allows for elegant lighting at night. And the fire will be of a scale seldom seen. So while I remains cautious, I believe there is a potential for a spectacular night vision, and a burn larger than we’ve seen in recent years.