I took part in the “Burning Man” project held in Nevada, USA, for the first time. This event takes place every year for a week from the end of August to early in September. This is the event that all visitors are not viewers but participants, buying and selling is strictly banned except some special cases, people camp in desert, and that various music, dance, performance and works get together. I’m not sure exactly why I thought I was going, but I’ve been curious about this event since several years ago, hearing exciting rumors about it, and then I just thought I should go.
It was terrible stormy day when I arrived the place, and there are many people wearing sunglasses and masks at the box office entrance of the desert. I was in a negative mood as it was terribly cold after taking a long flight after an all-nighter, and became anxious whether I could hold up for the next 4 days with this start of threadbare condition. But anyway, I entered BURN striking a bell of “FIRST BURN”. And then, I couldn’t believe my eyes with the world in the center of broad desert, which blowed off my anxiety all on a sudden.
I cannot explain well enough even after the event passed. You have to see it to believe it, and I think I shouldn’t write blow by blow, but I’ll show only things I was interested in. While I still think there should not be a report for people who are going there next time.
An art car.
A battle between 2 people on a swing like rubber in a big athletic dome. It was as if the world in a battle video game became a reality.
A big objet of fire dragon, which visitors can play changing its flames.
A huge and beautiful wooden dome, which was flashed by beautiful lighting all the time.
I wondered how they brought such massive amount of woods into this desert of seclusion.
As one of participants, I also tried to distribute “warabimochi” (bracken-starch dumpling) with warabimochi costume.
How people related at camping.
Drinks and Snacks (shaved ice), distributed in various places.
Fire. (You will know when you visit there, so I won’t write much about it.)
Everything was cryptic, and I think I should stop for now. When I asked one of the participants “why are you doing such a strange performance?”, the answer was “Just fun”, which somehow made me impressed.
I experienced various things such as engagement with people, nature, and more.
Everyone experiences differently here, but there are many things only this place can offer. I’ve heard so much about this event and expected that I won’t be surprised that much, but I was. I hope the event will continue with much more enchantment and I can come back here in the future again.
BURNING MAN 2006
Date: August 28th – September 4th, 2006
Place: Desert in Nevada, USA
Text and photos: PHIRIP [warabimochi lovers club]