By Lauri Apple | Gawker
Unless you’re wealthy, you’ve probably been spending Burning Man Week moping about how you couldn’t afford tickets to America‘s favorite festival of radical self-expression this year. But make no mistake: Those rich people touring the playa on their Mad Max cruisers are suffering, too.
As the Wall Street Journal tells us, many of this year’s Burners With Money to Burn are doing all they can to avoid the heat, food shortages, and other potential inconveniences of Black Rock City life by spending shitloads of money to recreate the comforts of home. Reps from the RV rental company Classic Adventures RV, for example, tell the WSJ that Vanity Fair New Establishmentarian and Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk hired them to set up “an elaborate compound consisting of eight recreational vehicles and trailers stocked with food, linens, groceries and other essentials for himself and his friends and family.” That’s not all:
[Classic Adventures] charges $5,500 to $10,000 per RV for its Camp Classic Concierge packages like Mr. Musk’s. At Mr. Musk’s RV enclave, the help empties septic tanks, brings water and makes sure the vehicles’ electricity, refrigeration, air conditioning, televisions, DVD players and other systems are ship shape. The staff also stocked the campers with Diet Coke, Gatorade and Cruzan rum.
But isn’t part of the point of Burning Man to “rough it,” radically? Perhaps in the olden days this was true. But rich people bring to the festival their own values and beliefs:
- Sleeping in a tent sucks
- Being really hot sucks
- Making your own art is hard, especially when you have no artistic skills or actual creativity whatsoever
About that last item: The WSJ tells us about one San Francisco real estate mogul who either didn’t feel like or lacked the capacity to construct their own sculpture, and therefore they hired a “team of artists and metalworkers” to built one on their behalf. The mogul wasn’t available for comment, but a chef who cooks up gourmet meals for Burners with refined tastes explains: “People have less and less time to be radically self-reliant.”
Despite their relatively resplendent accommodations, upper-crust Burners can’t shield themselves from every hardship:
Adam Stephenson, a 40-year-old marketing director for Symantec Corp., says that even though he is paying a premium for RV service, he put a lot of work into building a shade tent and buying costumes and supplies. And the RV isn’t the Ritz. “It’s not super easy,” he says. “The air conditioner is not on all the time.”
And when the A/C does break, the rich people sweat just like the poor people sweat. The sun treats everyone the same. This is one of the lessons you learn out there on the desert, when you’re not mastering leadership and contemplating how creativity can bourguignon-beef up your bottom line.
If you’re still sad about missing out on all the adventure and enlightenment and rich-people whining, this live-cam takes you to the action:
Live Video app for Facebook by Ustream
Burning Man 2011: Rites of Passage | Palm Beach Post
Tens of thousands of people have descended on a great expanse of Nevada desert to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Burning Man, a gathering of free spirits, artists, entrepreneurs — and anyone else who managed to get a ticket.
Several thousand more would-be participants will have to wait until next year, as 2011 marks another historic milestone: the first time the event has ever sold out, said Burning Man communications manager Andie Grace.
(Story continues below)
TIP: You can use your keyboard’s left and right arrow keys to navigate through the gallery
According to an agreement with the Bureau of Land Management, the event is permitted an average of only 50,000 people per day, Grace said.
The theme of this year’s festival, “Rites of Passage,” is an appropriate one as it also previews a change in the structure of the California-based Black Rock City, L.L.C., which runs the event, from a for-profit organization to a not-for-profit that will continue to promote the festival’s ideology throughout the year.
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French designer Mathieu Lehanneur has created Local River, a concept for a domestic “refrigerator-aquarium” that breeds freshwater fish for eating and grows vegetables at the same time.
Inspired by the Locavores movement of people who source food grown locally to avoid pollution and ensure freshness, the project would allow people to produce their own food at home.
Vegetables growing in floating pots would help purify the water by removing nitrates and other minerals.
The concept will be presented at Artists Space Gallery in New York from 25 April.
Here’s some info from Lehanneur:
Anthony van den Bossche, spin doctor.
Local River, home storage unit for fish and greens
The Locavores appeared in San Francisco in 2005 and define themselves as ‘a group of culinary adventurers who eat foods produced in a radius of 100 miles (160 km) around their city’. By doing so they aim to reduce impact on the environment inherent to the transport of foodstuffs, while ensuring their traceability.
Local River anticipates the growing influence of this group (the word ‘locavore’ made its first appearance in an American dictionary in 2007) by proposing a home storage unit for live freshwater fish combined with a mini vegetable patch. This DIY fish-farm-cum-kitchen-garden is based on the principle of aquaponics coupled with the exchange and interdependence of two living organisms – plants and fish.
The plants extract nutrients from the nitrate-rich dejecta of the fish. In doing so they act as a natural filter that purifies the water and maintains a vital balance for the eco-system in which the fish live. The same technique is used on large-scale pioneer aquaponics/fish-farms, which raise tilapia (a food fish from the Far East) and lettuce planted in trays floating on the surface of ponds.
Local River responds to everyday needs for fresh food that is 100% traceable. It bets on a return to favour of farm-raised freshwater fish (trout, eel, perch, carp, etc…), given the dwindling supplies of many saltwater species due to over-fishing. It also demonstrates the capacity of fish-farmers to deliver their stock live to a private consumer as a guarantee of optimum freshness – impossible in the case of saltwater fish that has been netted.
Local River aims to replace the decorative ‘TV aquarium’ by an equally decorative but also functional ‘refrigerator-aquarium’. In this scenario, fish and greens cohabit for a short time in a home storage unit before being eaten by their keepers, the end-players in an exchange cycle within a controlled ecosystem.
Materials: glass: blown & thermoformed, water pump, joints.
Dimensions : Large : 64 x 29 x 39 inches, Small : 29 x 18 x 36 inches.
Mathieu Lehanneur, designer. Graduated from ENSCI-Les Ateliers in 2001; is currently exploring possibilities in nature and technology for their break-thru potential in functions and their capacity to work magic. Made his international début with a series entitled ‘Elements’ (VIA Carte blanche 2006) and the ‘Bel Air’ filtering system for plants (2007), six objects that form a domestic ‘Health Angels’ kit for rebalancing everyday physiological needs (such as lack of sunlight in winter) and countering aggression factors in urban settings (noise & air pollution).
Anthony van den Bossche, age 36, independent ideas man and curator. Set up Duende Studio in 2007, for events design and press relations. Moved full-time into design in 2001 after working as a journalist, ideas man and producer in television. Has mounted exhibitions such as “Design@home.se’, ‘Norway says’ and ‘Eden ADN, genetic design’ (Biennale de Saint-Etienne 2006) that highlight functional and decorative improvement of living organisms. Member of the purchasing jury of the National Fund for Contemporary Art, decorative arts department, and creator of the world gazette website http://www.resetdesign.com (2002-07).
Alexandra Midal, professor of theory & history of design at Ecal (Switzerland) and School of Fine Arts of Toulouse (FR), former directress of Frac Haute-Normandie, now an independent curator of exhibitions. Has published several books and catalogues, including ‘Appartement témoin, les annees 50′, ‘Appartement témoin les annees 60′, ‘Antidesign : petite histoire de la capsule d’habitation en images’, and in 2008 ‘Tomorrow Now-When Design Meets Science Fiction’.
–posted by Marcus Fairs.
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Round-Up: Lofted Kitchens
The kitchen. It’s made a big comeback in recent years. This is especially true for kitchens with open layouts that lend themselves to a more communal dining experience. According to Adilin Darling Design, an architecture firm based in San Francisco, when a kitchen has an open layout, it becomes a “stage” within which the most average of cooks can shine. In that vein, we’ve rounded up some of our favorite open kitchens that we’ve found inspiring for your enjoyment this Friday.
Photography, top to bottom: Tom Ackerman, John Nietzel, Maï Linh, Maï Linh, Adroam Houston, and Matthew Millman)
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