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Get down n dirty with Red Earth Ecology

[bra_dropcaps style=’dropcap2′]C[/bra_dropcaps]ome get dirty with a bunch of Burners — nooooooo, not that kinda dirty. Cheeky! We do that all time. Nup, we’re offering you the chance to connect with Country, learn about the district’s ecosystems and build stronger ties with the local community by joining Red Earth Ecology on another biodiversity planting weekend on 1-3 May.

Red Earth Ecology is building on the momentum and success of last year’s project by organising a biodiversity planting at a property close to the Seed site. These plantings are an annual project that help strengthen the links between Burning Seed and the surrounding land and locals.

They’re looking for about 20 community members like YOU to join the crew. Help give something back to the people and place where we play, leave a positive trace, have fun and connect with other Burners towards a common goal. No, not BACON (although there will be plenty of that) – BIODIVERSITY! For a little sneaky squiz, check out the pics from last time.

This year the team will also work with skilled-up Burners to assess the Carbon footprint of Burning Seed 2015 so that we can offset our emissions accurately next year. Red Earth Ecology is also increasing its visibility this year at Seed, with MORE bush walks (which conveniently end at Red Earth Brewery during happy hour), and MORE education about the Red Earth City ecosystem online and at site.

For more information, contact maddock.helios@gmail.com

4991

Feeling the Burn as Seed brings it home

[bra_dropcaps style=’dropcap2′]L[/bra_dropcaps]ast month we posted about Christina Broza, a 50-year-old American ex-war vet now turned keen Burner, who shared her playa transformation story with us. But you don’t have to travel all the way to Nevada to experience those special moments at a Burn or feel the reverberations in your life after it’s finished.

Our 2014 census has revealed that many of you are feeling the same way about Seed, with stories of connection, authenticity, spiritual moments, hope, joy and… yes… what we would call life-changing experiences. We’ve collected a few of these tales in a diary for you to enjoy and, perhaps, empathise with. (For those crusties and snarkies amongst us, consider it an opportunity to reacquaint yourself with your softer side —  god/goddess/pick-your-deity forbid.)

This diary highlights yet again that Seed is much more than just a party or any ol’ festival. It is a space and place that has become our own petri-dish of possibility: add a little of this, a dash of that, a load more of them, shake and watch what happens.

Got a story to tell? Share it with us below in the comments section. [responsive-flipbook id=”imagine:nation_diary”]

 

 

 

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BMA Radio goes beta

BMAR1 (1)All your ears are belong to us!

Burning Man Australia Radio (BMAR) hit the digital sound waves last month with a Beta site that is now begging for your creative lubrication… YES people! This is a call out for community content!!!

We want spoken word shows, DJ sets, live recordings and more – check out our early guidelines on the FB page and send your content to redearthradio@gmail.com. We’re also making sexy plans for BMAR’s first live on-site broadcast for 2015 to come to your ears direct from Blazing Swan (April 1 – 7) – aural pleasure like you never knew!!

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Local crew bring Burning Man to Melbourne

Local Burner crew fired up Melbourne streets on February 21 with a blast of Burning Man art and heart at the annual White Night event. The 17-strong kick-arse crew created a 14-metre long, fire-breathing metal dragon and fire forest, which not only enthralled the crowds but made the front page of The Sunday Age and Herald Sun too.  

Led by Steph Selig and Sean Diamond, The Crucible project also proved to be a prime example of Burner can-do, with nine of the crew having never welded previously – or worked on large-scale metal art.

The idea came to life when Steph, a Melbourne-based member of the San Francisco art collective Flaming Lotus Girls and a Seeder, approached White Night about doing a fire piece for the all-night event. 

Meanwhile, the event organisers were keen to realise another dragon by Melbourne artist Sean Diamond, who had not previously incorporated fire into his sculptures. Add a local pyrotechnical company, Howard & Sons, and a bunch of keen-bean Burners into the mix and, hey presto, a collaboration was born!

Steph’s highlight? “Creating something so big and unleashing a little bit of Burning Man on Melbourne, and having the support of the city and Andrew Walsh (White Night artistic director) behind us the whole way. And empowering nine women to learn to weld was pretty awesome.”

And what about those who went all Flashdance and wielded their metal magic for the first time? Meet three of the women behind the welding mask.

 

 

 

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Chocolatey

Why did you join the project? I liked the idea of being part of a team that was creating something amazing, and, at the same time, learning how to work with metal and weld.

What was the highlight? Meeting other people working on the project and working with a group of highly creative and fun individuals. Seeing the final piece in action and watching people's reactions was of course also wonderful.

 

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Diia Bourke

Why did you join the project?  It was actually a New Years Resolution of mine to do something challenging and artistic, after going to Burning Seed for the first time in 2014, seeing some amazing art installation, following Burning Man on Instagram and getting inspired by the art.

What was the highlight? Apart from seeing the amazing dragon in its glory, the people I got to work with. Everyone was supportive of ideas and everyone pitched in. Steph and Sean were amazing group leaders. They allowed us to find our own way but also helped a lot.

 

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Anna Truong

Why did you join the project? The biggest reason was to increase my knowledge in lighting design and expose my skills in the public realm where most of my industry colleagues can see my work.  

What was the highlight? Hearing the gasps of awe and wonder of the audience during White Night.  It really made the hard work and effort with the tiny details for lighting and fire effects worth it, and I will cherish this memory for a very long time.

So what next for the Crucible crew? They plan to plumb the dragon themselves to create propane flame effects and to bring their creation to Seed (huzzah!). The project has also spawned a few individual metal projects, which will also be appearing at Seed (Double huzzah!).

Wanna make cool fire shit too? Flame Effects Australia will be running a fire art course in May. Check out the details here. To see more pics from the build, installation and tear down, visit Flame Effects Austalia's Flickr.

Cover pic by Kai O'Yang

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From whale to wish list — dream a little Seed with me


Our info requests often involve the help-line banalities of the obvious: “Where do I buy tickets?” (on the website you just visited, under tickets*), or “Tell me about Burning Seed” (have you met our website? The one you just visited to send the info request?*).

But sometimes we receive messages that not only make my day but remind me why I Burn. They also remind me to retain the faith in the specialness of what we are creating together at Burning Seed — despite the sometimes bumpy ride of growth, community and this radically participatory experiment.

Our most recent message also underlines the fact that other people are getting wind of our special little something too.

Meet Christine, a 50-year-old disabled military veteran from New Mexico, USA, who wrote to us via the Seed website. Her dream? To save up and make it to Burning Seed next year. After asking her if I could share her story with all of you, this is what she wrote back:

“Yes, my story is kind of funny and sad too…

I was a typical conservative Christian-type American. I served in the army during Desert Storm in the early ’90s,
and 
came from a strict Catholic background. One day I just “woke up” and felt it was all wrong and ridiculous:
none of this working hard and doing the right thing was making my life better, and the Christian male god isn’t
nice to females.

So, I left it all, turned to paganism and Wicca, left the conservative world behind…at age 48 mind you. I felt my
life had been wasted in religious and conservative hate and fear, like my parents, who it did nothing for
(American conservativism).

I was watching YouTube one winter night and came across a Burning Man video. A group built a giant whale art
car… and I got angry! It is not fair! I work hard every day, and these hippies can go out to a desert and build a whale
for no reason. Why can’t I do stuff like that??…why can’t I? Why can’t I? What is stopping me? Me…duh! Go find
your whale, Christine…

So, I found some Burners. They didn’t know what to think of this old conservative broad (I still looked and acted
conservative, not knowing any other way), but they let me hang around, and I got to attend a gay Burner wedding
(I was so glad for the invite, I felt like I had a new family), a regional burn, then the big burn in Nevada. And I got
to perform; someone started the first Burning Man classical orchestra and I play violin.

I cannot say enough how much it has changed my life! I regret that I am not young anymore and, as a disabled vet,
burning was physically tough, but I love it, love my new family, and look forward to more Burns — with Australia
on my dream list!”

Christine’s message is a reminder that Burning Seed brings together people from disparate tribes, all walks of life and far-flung countries too. It is this diversity — along with the inclusion and acceptance of it  — that makes our event so special.

Welcome to our little patch of Paddock paradise, Christine.[bra_border_divider top=’20’ bottom=’20’]

*No newbie was harmed in the making of this blog

 

 

 

 

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Community design labs: theme & logo

Like everything we do at Burning Seed, what you see is what we make – together. And in honour of this collaborative spirit, we’ve banished the word competition from our lexicon and developed Community Design Labs instead.

These labs will be opportunities throughout the year to bring your dreams and designs to life by helping to create  — and choose — the design for a range of Burning Seed projects. Anyone can submit a design and wherever possible we will involve the community in shortlisting them with the help of online voting tools.

And this year we need your help not only with the theme — Revolution — but a new logo for Burning Seed. We’ll also be looking at you  — yes, YOU — to design our Effigy and Temple for 2015. There’s also a rumble in the radio jungle, we hear, with Red Earth Radio also looking for a logo. Stay tuned!

Check out our new participation portal for these Community Design Labs. Here you’ll find details on submissions and a place to upload your designs.

 

 

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Burning Seed 2015 theme and dates announced

You guys threw your theme ideas into the fire and out of the flames rose… Revolution! Yup. The theme for Burning Seed 2015 will be Revolution, so get those creative juices flowing over the chrissy break because we’ve got dates for you too. Drum roll please…

Burning Seed 2015 will take place again at Matong State Forest from Wednesday 30 September to Monday 5 October.

You might have noticed that we’re finishing a day earlier than the 2014 event, and pack-down is the main reason for this change. With the bulk of participants leaving the event on Sunday or Monday, and the pack-down process not able to start until Tuesday, we have struggled to retain enough community crew to help with this last big heave-ho task.

But never fear: we won’t be hustling you off the site as soon as Monday hits. We will start packing down community services such as rangers, info centre, ice and toilets from midday, and you will still have 24 hours to leave Red Earth City. 

Thanks to everyone who submitted a theme idea and used our new Town Hall Social voting tool to create the shortlist. Stay tuned for the chance to create next year’s theme design.

Revolution

Revolution – a word so often charged with the bloody, ideological fury of a group seeking to overturn the prevailing
powers or structures as fast as their critical mass will allow.

But the power of Burning Seed’s revolution is not in rapid overthrow or raised fist. Its power is in the depth of motion
and change, and drawn from the love and evolution that live within the word itself.

Revolution is the constant, circular return to the beginning, the omega of the old and the alpha of the new. It is the
panorama of new vistas and experiences emerging on the horizon of each new rotation of our world.

And as Burning Seed takes its sixth spin around the sun, the event and its ten principles continue to provide a pivotal
point for those seeking a (r)evolution in how we all live, love, work and play together.

Our revolution is both an act of humanity and one of fire. It scorches the earth and tears itself open for the sapling of change,
from the deeply personal to the greater social fabric of our growing community. It awakens the heart and flies the spirit like an ensign. Revolution15 is our incendiary phoenix.

 

What does Revolution mean to you? How do you associate it with Burning Seed? Share your (brief) thoughts with us and we’ll turn them into a crowdcloud of your words and phrases, as well as signage for the 2015 event site. Share your ideas here.[bra_border_divider top=’20’ bottom=’20’]

Pic by Randy Brophy
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Seedtech — keeping you in the loop

The 2015 Burning Seed theme was a chance to road test an online voting tool, which was gifted to us by a Burner and community-engagement honcho, Keren Flavell. This kind of tool will be the first of many opportunities for you to better vote, engage, give feedback or just stay in the loop with Burning Seed.

While we would love to be able to sit around the Paddock with you all and chew the fat about our co-created Seed adventure, we all spend a large amount of time apart, online and only in contact with our closer community of Burner friends.

We’re therefore keen to develop more platforms like Town Hall Social so that our community can keep up the conversation about the past, present and future of Seed, even when we’re all apart.

For the 2015 Burning Seed theme, the community was able to help shortlist the top five theme choices with the help of Town Hall Social. This allowed them to rank their favourites while also seeing the overall community results in real time. In the new year, we plan to utilise this tool for more community voting around the theme design and a new logo for Burning Seed. 

But our tooltime doesn’t stop there. Each year, we run our annual census with the help of Amelia Loye (yay Bubbles) and her generous gift of a full licence for Survey Gizmo. This year, we’ve also heard your questions and sent the answers right back atcha’ with the help of Slideshare. Our 2013 Effigy and identity Survey also received a lot of interest.

Stay tuned for more feedback frenzy when we publish the Burning Seed 2014 AfterBurn report at the end of January. In the new year, we will also create another opportunity for you to share your further thoughts and suggestions for the consent issue.

With so much techie talent in our community, we’re keen to hear what further tool tips you have for crowdgenerating ideas, taking the pulse of the community and just generally having a yak. Friends, Burners, countrymen and women, lend us your ideas!