(Vaults for value(s)
“A Perfect Circle”
— Burning Man Founder, the late Larry Harvey
Birthed of the famous Burning Man events, known to appraisers and curators as “Playa Artifacts”...
March 30, 2018 – January 21, 2019, Smithsonian Institute. Burning Man Exhibition doubles attendance over the previous year. Cincinnati Art Museum and the Oakland Museum of California follow by 2020.
Mischell Riley, Maya's Mind. Photo by Jeff Song.
Marco Cochrane, Truth is Beauty, 2017. Photo by Ron Blunt.
Michael Garlington and Natalia Bertotti, Paper Arch, 2018. Photo by Ron Blunt.
Art appraisers call such coveted placement provenance, but the curious “Burning Community” has always been loaded with the stuff, largely for the plethora of stories escaping from the events, but also for its role in cultural evolution. Time’s “100 Most Important Sites of Civilization” only hints at the accolades. This industry article pays tribute.
The production and sharing of this collection of monuments has spanned seven American presidents, as an actual Liberty revolution built to its current crescendo. As Liberty (R)evolution has evolved, each stop has also contributed to the roving installation’s history — that trusted determinant of value. These artworks have survived their own burn at the annual Burning Man events, a culture famous for burning it’s most celebrated fruits. Appraisers and curators call these “playa artifacts” and replications of such artifacts are also heir to that provenance.
These artworks and ceremonies have come to rest, for three consecutive summers adjacent to Burning Man’s world-renowned Temple; coveted placement indeed…
A Fire Inside ritual ceremony was selected from decades of glorious burns to represent fire art in the definitive book, Burning Man, Art on Fire, co written by the event's founder, Larry Harvey. A now famous image by Scott London, first featured in Rolling Stone, was the sole feature on the facing page to the chapter "Art Ablaze". Not bad considering the first piece in the collection was attacked by arson there...
Liberty (R)evolution, set against its historical backdrop has reached a zenith in the influential Burning Community, itself a force of cultural change, thereby valuing the collection beyond just any wooden statues. That value can ultimately diversify and fortify investment portfolios while fostering replications and driving the collection into always higher venues around the world -- further accruing their value.