$5000 for a Ride on an Art Car?

In the past, some Art Cars have turned to Kickstarter and IndieGogo campaigns to raise money for their Burn. An obvious perk is “ride on the car”; a larger one would be “use the whole car for a night with all of your friends”. Some Burners in Austin, TX have turned to Craigslist, to help raise money for their non-profit fire festival.

From Craigslist:

A night at Burning Man on an art car (Black Rock City Nevada)

image 1image 2image 3
The nonprofit (501c3) Telluride Fire Festival is bringing the “Shack To-Hell-U-Ride” to Burning Man!What is the “Shack”? It is a cozy, custom-built mutant vehicle designed by renowned BRC artist Jamie Vaida (Oakland, CA) and built with Alvin Sessions (Grand Junction, CO). It resembles a historic miner’s shack in Telluride, CO, and is built with lots of salvaged pieces from 100+ year-old homes. Complete with a wrought iron bed, a functioning parlor wood stove (for chilly nights, by the way this is really the best wood stove), and a vintage 1920s ice box for your chilled beverages. It also features a sound system to suit or shift your mood.The special effects on this one-of-a-kind art car include a burning roof. Literally! The “shack” floats along The Playa and looks as if it’s on fire! It’s very safe, and we do carry fire extinguishers.We need your help! We are raising funds to finish building the art car and get it to the Playa. For your $5,000 or more tax deductible donation, we will reward you and 15 of your friends with an evening of your choice aboard the “Shack”. For this donation, we will pick you up at your camp at the time you desire, take you out on The Playa (keep you entertained) and bring you back to your camp…safely.

This Craigslist deal looks like a bargain: they are selling the same thing on eBay for $10,000. You could get 2 nights for the price of 1!
What do you think, Burners? Is this sort of thing acceptable at Burning Man these days, or does this go against the Decommodification Principle?

Wide Awake: The Funktion One Art Car [Update]

funktion1 mega stackSpeaker company Funktion-One is responsible for much of the clean, crisp, and very, very loud sound you hear at Burning Man. I’m a fan, along with Martin Audio, and B & W (for home).

They recently built a system for Wide Awake, the camp of EDM mega-promoter and Insomniac founder Pasquale Rotella.

A Burner alerted me to this story posted on Funktion-One’s Web Site, saying it is an example of Commodification – trying to use Burning Man to sell a commercial product. What do you think, Burners?

Screenshot 2015-04-30 15.32.30

[Source: Funktion-One]

[Update 5/1/15 9:26am]

There’s more, also on the Funktion-One web site:

Screenshot 2015-05-01 09.25.03

Screenshot 2015-05-01 09.25.30

“Funktion-One enjoys an affinifty with Burning Man’s volition”…what does that even mean? The “burningman.com” at the end makes it look officially sanctioned.


wide awake car

Image: The Scene Is Dead

wide awake art car

insomniac art car


The art car also uses a Powersoft Digimod amplifier system.


Image: Zio Giorgio


The mobile PA consisted of custom left and right Funktion One loudspeaker stacks mounted on individual carts. Each of the stacks were powered by Powersoft DigiMod 3000PFC amplifier modules sealed in custom designed “closets” bolted to the subwoofer stacks. The two stack carts were pushed and pulled in front of and behind the car with the generator cart tagging along at the end.  The car itself was built upon a 16-foot dual axle truck equipped with a custom DJ booth and VIP seating for at least 40 people. The VIP area was covered by its own Funktion One loudspeaker system, powered by a third Powersoft amplifier module closet.

“The idea was that they could unhitch and position the loudspeaker stacks to the left and right of the car and have a high-end electronic dance party happening anywhere,” Konecny adds. “We even designed the main system to work on a stand-alone basis so that they could leave the main PA up and running and take the car to cruise around the playa.”

Each of the main stacks consisted of three Funktion One F221 double 21-inch subwoofers and four custom Funktion One 10-inch and 1-inch mid/high loudspeakers configured to sit on the subwoofer stack.

Each cart amplifier closet held seven DigiMod 3000PFC modules. Six of the modules running in bridge configuration powered the six 21″ subwoofers drivers, providing approximately 3,400 watts to each driver. The seventh amp module drove the mid/high 10-inch drivers on one channel and the 1-inch drivers on the other.

Each of the closets had the air intake exhaust filtered using a high performance automobile filter. The air output was filtered to prevent dust from the playa from getting in and contaminating the closet when the blower was not running. The blowers themselves were on thermostats so that they were exchanging air only when the interior temps were high, keeping the amount of dust that the filters have to deal with to a minimum. For convenience, the filters were washable in the field so that they could stay clean.  The closets were equipped with a single twist lock power connection providing three phases of 30A service.

“The DigiMod modules were run on two legs of the three phase service, so they were running at 208Vac,” adds Konecny. “Since there were six modules running identical low end programming, this approximated a fairly balanced load to the power connection.”

Konecny continues, “In order to be prepared for any scenario we designed the closets so that individual modules could be replaced through the front panel without powering down the system.  Fortunately the need never arose, the Powersoft modules were terrific.”

The car itself was equipped with an additional F221 subwoofer  and two Function One AX88 mid-high loudspeakers. The third amplifier closet, loaded with six DigiMod 3000PFC modules, powered this system.  The Insomniac art car was a non-stop mobile fixture of entertainment throughout the Burning Man festival. Aptly titled the Insomniac “Wide Awake” car, it garnered “Best in Show” for art cars at the event.  Since then it continues to offer a full lineup of local artists and special guests during various events hosted by Insomniac in the greater Los Angeles area.

info: www.powersoft-audio.com

This is a story promoting the use of Powersoft’s products, but unlike with the Funktion-Ones, it’s not at Powersoft’s web site, it’s at ZioGiorgio:

ZIOGIORGIO is the first real multilingual world network for information about professional entertainment. The only real tool that allows professionals to get timely information on events and technical news of the sector all over the world.

ZIOGIORGIO network essentially consists of ten sites linked to one another and created by separate editorial offices for each language spoken in the countries where the network is present.

How does it compare to this Fest300 Burning Man-related advertorial?

fest300 safety tips burningman-shorter


What do you think? OK? Not OK? OK but not for a Director sworn to represent the Ten Principles? Or OK for BMOrg elites but not for regular Burners?

Hot Wheels: Bike Thieves Beware

by Whatsblem the Pro


The latest issue of The Jack Rabbit Speaks links to a survey about stolen bicycles:

“Runs With Scissors has a cool project:

“It happens frequently: in the worst situation, you may find yourself exhausted after a party in deep playa – and the bicycle you were planning to ride back on is no where to be found, but a mangled wreck with a broken chain has been left as a sorry replacement. There are stories of people who have bicycles taken from racks in the backs of their camps on the first day and there are stories of people lifting whole clumps of chained bicycles and putting them into trucks.



“The trouble is that I only have stories and I want real statistics. I want to build a map that tells me where the most likely place is for a bicycle to be lost. I want to know what the qualities are of a bicycle is that makes it more likely to disappear.

“If we have enough data points, we can learn when and where we need to protect ourselves and how to prevent this from happening to ourselves. If you have ever had a bicycle disappear, please take the time to fill out the quick survey below.”

Life is so unfair

Life is so unfair

What really interested me about this JRS item was the mention of “people lifting whole clumps of chained bicycles and putting them into trucks.”

While wandering in the deep playa this year, I happened upon two separate caches of perhaps a hundred to two hundred bicycles each. They were mostly high-end steeds, and they were all lying down and locked, some to each other. These big caches of locked bikes weren’t near anything whatsoever; they looked as though they were just waiting for a big rig to pull up and someone to load them in.

It's better exercise than a handbasket

It’s better exercise than a handbasket

It’s undeniable that, after Exodus, a huge number of lost and abandoned bikes remains on the playa, deliberately ditched by departing attendees from far-flung corners of the Earth, or taken for an unauthorized joyride and abandoned, or simply lost and forgotten by their owners in the general frenzy. They’re not typically locked, though, and this wasn’t after Exodus; these caches of mystery bikes were there before the temple burned.

Three hundred used high-end bicycles sold at a cut rate of a hundred dollars each brings in thirty thousand dollars.

Is an organized bike theft ring operating in Black Rock City?