For twelve years I have traveled to art shows around the country, setting up and exhibiting my work. I’m well adapted to the unpredictable routine, but I still have occasional anxiety dreams. In my dreams, I forget something, or my car won’t start, or no one comes to my opening. Showing my art at Burning Man made those dreams look astoundingly pedestrian.
I hope most of you have enjoyed amazing photos of the event. If not, start here or here and then Google away. It is so huge and so varied, that I find myself looking at whole albums full of things I never saw. Big things. With flames. It’s the kind of place where you CAN miss a giant boulder suspended in air, or a Billion Bunny March.
This is a look at exhibiting my little art piece on the big desert. (This story started with my previous post.)
You can click on an image to see it bigger, with comments, and scroll through the albums. Hit “escape” to get back to the main post.
Placement (AKA Booth Assignment)
I brought what’s called “walk-in art”, which means I had not registered ahead of time, or been assigned a location. So I had to work that out at The Artery, on site. They were great. Welcoming, fun, and pro. Always a winning hand.
I had my placement, and was ready to set up! But you can’t just drive a car out into the middle of the Playa, because that would break the visual mood. Luckily, my camp had a resident art-car, approved by the DMV (Department of Mutant Vehicles). She had to be coaxed into waking up, but it was worth it to be able to say “I was going to leave at 11, but my dragon wouldn’t start…”
Time to see if this actually works!
It worked! I set up on Wednesday morning, and the piece held up until I took it down on Sunday. It was a fantastic experience. Every time I went out to check on it, or clean it, I had wonderful conversations with gracious, creative, appreciative, generous and quirky people. I had a couple of teary moments and a lot of great laughs. It was illuminating and fulfilling to step away from any connection to commerce, and just focus on what I really love, which is making a connection to people.
And then it was done, and time to dismantle and leave no trace. Some of my wonderful campmates came out to help me break down. In a final strange twist, the one thing I was unable to do was to burn the work! I dismantled all of the plastics and metals, but the Community Burn Garden wouldn’t take the cardboard in the mats! So the prints are back home after all. Trying to find a date to burn them at Baker Beach, where this all began!
Thanks to everyone who pitched in! It was so much fun to work with so many people and create something together. It helped my hands and filled my heart! Big dusty hugs all around!