Taschen, Hohenzollernring 53, 50672 Köln, www.taschen.com
A month before the first issue of Trust was published (July 1986), the first „Burning Man“ event happened with a few people at Baker Beach in San Francisco. After 4 years the „man“ was over 12 meters big and it was not possible anymore to hold the event at Baker Beach. 1990 was the first time „Burning Man“ happend in Nevada in the Black Rock Desert with less than 100 people. 1996 it was already 8000 people and growing… even the dotmatrix words on each ticket did not help to keep numbers low: „YOU VOLUNTARLY ASSUME THE RISK OF SERIOUS INJURY OR DEATH BY ATTENDING“. (in 2014 it was +65.000 people!) It was pure anarchy in the first years, but it all changed. „The final two years of the 20th century represent the dawn of the third age of Burning Man.
If the first age was the urban backyard of Baker Beach, and the second the early frontier years, then the third is civic maturitiy in the desert; the age documented in this book.“ But even if some people argue that nowadays Burning Man is a multi million dollar operation for yuppies and dot.com millionairs (which is not untrue), it is still not a childrens birthdayparty. But a amazing event with some great art and lots of people who go there for various reasons. So lets leave that discussion to the experts and concentrate on the book. It is a nice hardcover book sized 26,8 x 3,2 x 35,3 cm with 280 pages. With very many great photos by NK Guy from 16 years of Burning Man. The hundreds of photos all have captions that tell the year it was shot, the name of the art and the artist/s and a short description. Alot of the photos are doublespreads (some of those even fold out to their left and right!) The photos are all of amazing quality and capture the spirit of Burning Man very well. Guy shows his talent when he includes also natural phenomenons in his photograpy, like sunlight, dust or storm. Pushes the quality of the pictures even more up. But even without that, the viewer gets to see amazing installations of all sizes. There is also quiet some text – after a forword by David Best there is seven chapters with a bunch of subchapters. INTRODUCTION: The playa, Genesis of the Man, The Whole Earth, You assume the risk, September 1998; MORNING: Temporary communities, Invisible towers, The artists of Burning Man, Zome Trip. 2012, Interactivity; AFTERNOON: Dust, Le Mystère de Pepe Ozan, Waiting at the DMV, The invader from space. 2006, The temples of Burning Man, The Temple of Stars. 2004; EVENING: The currency of cool, The ARTery and Art Support, Heavy Equipment. 2012, The call of judgements, Ten principles; NIGHT: The Trojan Horse. 2011, The playa will fuck your art, The sky at night. 2009, Fire art, Star Seed. 2012, Burn night. 2013, The Temple burn. 2013; CONCLUSION: The future, Epilogue: 1999; FUTURWORLD by Marian Goodell. As you can tell the author sometimes dedicates a subchapter to a single piece of art (and pieces those are I can ensure you!) and sometimes he explains how „Burning Man“ functions. That is sometimes more interesting than other times (the book comes with a seperate 40 page magazine with the text translated in german and french) but luckly you always get to see all those great photos. Last year (2015) admission to the festival was 390.- $US so it is cheaper to get this book, of course the experience is not the same, but maybe it can convince you to spend more money. 39,99 Euro (dolf)
[Trust # 177 April 2016]