Tens of thousands have braved massive traffic jams to get to a remote stretch of Nevada desert for the annual Burning Man festival.
The highly-anticipated art and music festival runs over nine days from Sunday until September 4 in Black Rock Desert, which is about 120 miles north of Reno.
Black Rock City has been transformed into a ‘metropolis dedicated to community, art, self-expression and self-reliance’ where about 70,000 people have descended upon.
In a matter of days, volunteers for the event built what is likely to be the state’s busiest airport in the middle of an ancient dry lake-bed.
The airport, formally known as 88NV, is built every year and averages as many as 800 takeoffs and landings a day before it’s taken down completely at the end of the event.
And so it begins: The annual Burning Man Festival kicked off on Sunday in Nevada where thousands of attendees plan to participate in the iconic event that features larger-than-life art installations, like the one pictured above
Let’s go: The highly-anticipated art and music festival runs over nine days from Sunday until September 4. Above two people ride in a golf cart that has been transformed into resemble a giant stuffed animal
Furr-real: Stunning photographs show the larger-than-life art installations that are the focal points of this year’s festival theme of Radical Ritual. The art installation above of the family of bears was created from thousands of pennies
Roar: Black Rock City has been transformed into a ‘metropolis dedicated to community, art, self-expression and self-reliance’ where about 70,000 people have descended upon. Pictured above is a multi-passenger car transformed into art
Hot: The popular event takes place in Black Rock City, which is about 120 miles north of Reno. Pictured above is one of the many cars transformed into art
Colorful: According to the event’s website, dozens of art installations were constructed before the end of the weekend. Above one of the art installations is displayed for the event
Spectacular: The vehicle on the left has to be one of the most detailed art cars created, with hand done wood work on the outside
According to the event’s website, dozens of art installations were constructed before the end of the weekend, some made from wire, others as patterns on the ground and some as immersive experiences.
Stunning photographs show the larger-than-life art installations that are the focal points of this year’s festival theme of Radical Ritual.
The Radical Ritual theme this year is to honor rituals that humankind has made, including the festival.
The event’s website says: ‘Burning Man is permeated with rituals. These rites speak of soulful need; the desire to belong to a place, to belong to a time, to belong to one another, and to belong to something that is greater than ourselves, even in the midst of impermanence.
‘Throughout all ages temples have been built in order to induce these feelings.’
Excitement: Pictured above are the art cars lining up to register with the Burning Man Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV)
Ready to move: Vehicles are vigorously inspected and, depending on their functionality, will be issued a daytime or nighttime permit from the Burning Man DMV
Amazing: The art car above seems to be a platform transformed into a huge, shaded tent with pillows for guests to relax on
Exercise: Outside of art cars, during the popular event, many ‘Burners’ use bicycles to explore the make-shift city in the desert
Creepy: Some of the art installations are made from wire, as others are patterns on the ground like the one pictured above of rats. The metal cut outs of the creepy rodents rotate with the wind
Captivating: Prior to the event starting on Sunday, artists worked hard to complete their art pieces to have their displays ready
Creative: A make-shift pier has even been created for the festival, as there is a shark emerging from the sand at the end of it
Every year, several ‘temples’ are built according to a theme and on the last day, they are burned down in a ritualistic ceremony.
The festival, which began in 1986 as a bonfire, has erected a temple commemorating the Golden Spike and participants are invited to visit the shrine and make offerings that embody what Burning Man’s culture means to them.
The premise of the Burning Man festival is that almost everything is created entirely by its citizens, who are active participants in the experience.
Since money is practically outlawed on the site, ‘Burners’ are urged to barter for commodities and in the past fans have taken to social media to swap items such as crystals for festival tickets.
Dusty: As thousands of people descend upon Black Rock City, the playa is sure to become extra dusty
Education: The Earth Guardians are a volunteer based group and their mission is to educate burners on the Leave No Trace principals and ways they can help keep the playa pristine. This photo is of their first major coordination meeting
Ready to guard: Above two Earth Guardians pose for a picture outside of their meeting at the event
A refresher course on performing environmental compliance checks was conducted among the Earth Guardians
The remote week-long rave is often described as ‘where Mad Max meets Woodstock’.
Thirty years after its first incarnation, the event is populous with tens of thousands of people attending the dried up lake where the event is held which becomes Black Rock City.
However, the festival risked relocation this year due to a pool of standing water, prompting officials in June to warn there was a possibility that the event could be moved from its location two hours north of Reno in Gerlach.
The desert basin is transformed into mud every year by the run-off of melting snow, but this past season’s high precipitation formed the lake, causing fears that the playa would be muddy and impossible to drive across.
Safety first: There are a few stations set up around the playa as contact points to answer questions or provide assistance to participants. This is the law enforcement mobile trailer
Learning and living: One of the many things done during the event is outreach. Above the BLM Interprative Camp crew is pictured setting up their camp
BLM Law Enforcement officers are spread out through Black Rock City to also answer questions and assist those in need
THE TEN PRINCIPLES OF BURNING MAN
Anyone may be a part of Burning Man. We welcome and respect the stranger. No prerequisites exist for participation in our community.
Burning Man is devoted to acts of gift giving. The value of a gift is unconditional. Gifting does not contemplate a return or an exchange for something of equal value.
In order to preserve the spirit of gifting, our community seeks to create social environments that are unmediated by commercial sponsorships, transactions, or advertising. We stand ready to protect our culture from such exploitation. We resist the substitution of consumption for participatory experience.
Burning Man encourages the individual to discover, exercise and rely on his or her inner resources.
Radical self-expression arises from the unique gifts of the individual. No one other than the individual or a collaborating group can determine its content. It is offered as a gift to others. In this spirit, the giver should respect the rights and liberties of the recipient.
Our community values creative cooperation and collaboration. We strive to produce, promote and protect social networks, public spaces, works of art, and methods of communication that support such interaction.
We value civil society. Community members who organize events should assume responsibility for public welfare and endeavor to communicate civic responsibilities to participants. They must also assume responsibility for conducting events in accordance with local, state and federal laws.
Leaving No Trace
Our community respects the environment. We are committed to leaving no physical trace of our activities wherever we gather. We clean up after ourselves and endeavor, whenever possible, to leave such places in a better state than when we found them.
Our community is committed to a radically participatory ethic. We believe that transformative change, whether in the individual or in society, can occur only through the medium of deeply personal participation. We achieve being through doing. Everyone is invited to work. Everyone is invited to play. We make the world real through actions that open the heart.
Immediate experience is, in many ways, the most important touchstone of value in our culture. We seek to overcome barriers that stand between us and a recognition of our inner selves, the reality of those around us, participation in society, and contact with a natural world exceeding human powers. No idea can substitute for this experience.