The Art of Burning Man

John Hill
23. March 2018
FoldHaus, "Shrumen Lumen," 2016 (Photo: Rene Smith)

A new exhibition at the Smithsonian American Art Museum highlights some of the experimental art installations that are erected annually as part of the Burning Man festivities in Nevada's Black Rock Desert. No Spectators: The Art of Burning Man also expands beyond the gallery's walls to take the art to the streets of Washington, DC.

When Kim Cook, Burning Man's Director of Art and Civic Engagement, spoke at the World Architecture Festival last year, she showed many images of some of the tens of thousands of people who spend a week on the "Playa," as well as the many art installations they create for the festival. But she also spoke about the Burning Man network, which takes the festival's participatory artworks from the temporary desert festival and into cities to share the ideals of Burning Man. No Spectators: The Art of Burning Man does this in two ways: through immersive room-sized installations, costumes, jewelry, and ephemera in the Renwick Gallery; and through an outdoor extension, No Spectators: Beyond the Renwick, that displays sculptures from Burning Man throughout the surrounding Golden Triangle neighborhood.

No Spectators is on display from 30 March 2018 to 21 January 2019.

FoldHaus, "Shrumen Lumen," 2016 (Photo: Rene Smith)
Aerial view of Burning Man gathering at Black Rock City, 2012 (Photo: Scott London)

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