The building season has begun. As Moze posted recently, the Honorarium List is out. As one of this year’s honorarium artists I thought I’d give a little insight into how one comes to the conclusion to take on the monumental project of building The Temple for Burning Man.
It all began Sunday last year on the playa. Sunday for me has always been a day of reflection. Last year I woke up in a very reflective mood as the dust storm was raging…”Why on earth do I come out to this god forsaken hole”… <cough, cough> …”Why do I insist on making art in this inhospitable place”. Just as my pity party was in full swing my favorite art partner Rebecca Anders finds me and suggests we go on an OPA tour (Other Peoples Art tour). She had been having a similar morning of woe and needed to get away. Joined by Don Cain, of DSC, we went on a deep playa excursion to see what treasures we had missed during the week while we were installing Fishbug.
As we moved out into the deeper playa we saw several installations including a memorable European (Netherlands and France) crew taking group pictures at their brightly colored R-EVOLUTION letters – Obscure by Liv Storli. Then nearly out at the trash fence we happened upon Crow Mother. Its creator Dan Glass was there prepping it to burn. Dan is an artist from New York. Crow Mother was a large-scale version of a Hopi Indian kachina doll in memorial to his mother, Judith Anne Collins, and adorned with her leftover objects and nick-nacks.
This little art excursion seemed to have a positive effect on our moods. Serving to remind us why we make art and why we share it here. With our moods improved we headed back in towards the city. As we made our way back we came upon The Temple – Fire Of Fires by David Umlas and Marrilee Ratcliffe. It was a rather beautiful sight: the dust was settling, the sun was low on the horizon, and the temple was being revealed.
Breaking the silence that had come over our little art tour, “I want to make the Temple,” Rebecca said. And without any pause I responded “Yes, let’s make it!” And that is how it began.
Please follow along with our progress: web, FB, twitter and join us for our event May 1st, 2010 at Kelly’s Mission Rock, in San Francisco. We will be on hand for discussions and will have prototypes and models of our design.