Burning Man and Steampunk… Burning Man 2013

It is hard to imagine steampunk being better represented than Neverwas Haul. Picture placing a Victorian home on top of an old train's steam engine, complete with cow-catcher. (Photo by Tom Lovering aka Adios.)

It is hard to imagine steampunk being better represented than Neverwas Haul. Picture placing an elegant Victorian home on top of a train’s steam engine. (Photo by Tom Lovering aka Adios.)

Burning Man and steampunk are made for each other. Think sci-fi/fantasy, alternative history, Wild West, Victorian costumes and mutant vehicles and you could be thinking about Burning Man… or you could be thinking about steampunk.

Although I have spent much of my life reading science fiction… and many of my favorite authors have dipped into the world of steampunk (some like Jules Verne, long before the genre evolved), it was at Burning Man that I first heard the name.

I view steampunk as an escape into the past, a form of romantic fantasy where Victorian elegance and advanced steam engine technology exist side by side. Gas engines, electricity, and strait-laced Victorian attitudes have yet to be invented.

The elaborate costumes and mutant vehicles that are so central to the Burning Man experience provide fertile ground for steampunk culture. Two mutant vehicles, El Pulpo Mechanico and Neverwas Haul, stand out in my mind as archetypes of steampunk presence at Burning Man.

I look forward to seeing in what wonderfully creative ways steampunk will be represented at Burning Man 2013.

El Popo Mechanico enjoys watching the Man Burn at Burning Man 2012.

El Pulpo Mechanico enjoys watching the Man Burn at Burning Man 2012. (Photo by Curtis Mekemson)

El Popo Mechanico with an admiring crowd in all of his flaming glory.

El Pulpo Mechanico with an admiring crowd in all of his flaming glory. (Photo by Curtis Mekemson.)

El Popo Mechanico, a major example of steampunk, rests up for another fiery night at Burning Man.

El Pulpo Mechanico, rests up for another fiery night at Burning Man. I love the bulging eyeballs and sharp teeth. (Photo by Peggy Mekemson)

An upper view of Neverwas Haul and a crew member dressed up in Victorian garb.

An upper view of Neverwas Haul and a crew member dressed up in Victorian garb. (Photo by Curtis Mekemson.)

I also like this side view of the Victorian house on Neverwas Haul. (Photo by Curtis Mekemson)

I also like this side view of the Victorian house on Neverwas Haul. (Photo by Curtis Mekemson)

I feel that a number of other mutant vehicles at Burning Man would be quite at home in a steampunk Landscape. This is one. (Photo by Beth Lovering.)

I feel that a number of other mutant vehicles at Burning Man would be quite at home in a steampunk landscape. This is one. (Photo by Beth Lovering.)

A final steampunk-like mutant vehicle found at Burning Man. (Photo by Curtis Mekemson.)

A final steampunk-like mutant vehicle found at Burning Man. (Photo by Curtis Mekemson.)

If you have enjoyed this blog, you might want to check out my five reasons for going to Burning Man in 2014.

NEXT BLOG: It’s back to the sea ports of the Mediterranean and the volcano-preserved city of Pompeii.

11 comments on “Burning Man and Steampunk… Burning Man 2013

  1. I’m still amazed at the amount of details in these “props”.. They are each so amazing and wonderful.. Can’t wait to see what pictures you bring back from this years Burning Man.

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