A Seven Ton Coyote and Other BRC Wonders… Burning Man 2013

Coyote sculpture at Burning Man 2013.

Caught in the early morning sun, Coyote raises his head and howls. Note the guy sitting beneath his chin. Much of the art at Burning Man is designed to be climbed on. Large helium balloons stretch off to the right.

I talked to a coyote once. I was hiking on the American River Parkway in Sacramento when I saw one disappear into the brush. I froze. A couple of minutes later he came back out and looked at me. I remained still and he continued to stare. Suddenly he raised his head up and gave a Coyote greeting, “Yip, yip, yee.” Translated loosely, it meant, “Why are you behaving so weirdly?” I raised my head and responded, “Yip, yip, yee.”

I don’t know exactly what I said but he sat down and howled again. I sat down and did likewise. Thus our conversation began. It went on for about fifteen minutes before we ran out of things to say, got up and headed off on in different directions. The experience had been close to magical.

I suspect my behavior would have been different had the coyote been 25 feet tall and weighed seven tons. Fortunately, Bryan Tedrick’s coyote sculpture at Burning Man this year was made of steel and not likely to eat anyone. (Burners were welcome to rest in his belly, however. That is they were until too many fell off.)

Below are photos of Coyote and several other works of art at Burning Man 2013 I considered among my favorites.

Coyote at Black Rock City.

Another early morning view of Coyote. (Photo by Tom Lovering.)

Coyote and the Man. (Photo by Peggy Mekemson.)

Coyote with people in his stomach shown along with the Man. (Photo by Peggy Mekemson.)

Cargo Youth Spacecraft at Burning Man 2013

I really liked this UFO called Cargo Youth Spacecraft, which was created by Dana Albany working with youth groups in the Bay Area. It was created with 50% recycled materials.

Cargo Youth Spacecraft at Burning Man 2013.

Tom Lovering took a fun photo of the Cargo Youth Spacecraft with the Man’s flying saucer. (Photo by Tom Lovering.)

BELIEVE at Black Rock City 2013.

Big words created by Laura Kimpton and Jeff Schomberg have become an annual treat at Burning Man. Past words have included Mom, Ego, Love and Oink. (Photo by Peggy Mekemson.)

Tom caught one of his early morning shots of BELIEVE. (Photo by Tom Lovering.)

Tom caught one of his early morning shots of BELIEVE. (Photo by Tom Lovering.)

BELIEVE at Black Rock City 2013

BELIEVE at night.

Art sculpture Drift at Burning Man 2013

I found what looked like neurons slipping across the Playa. This was the Drifts Sculpture by Michael Christian.

Drift at Black Rock City 2013.

A close up of Drift.

Here we have a Canadian Goose made out of 100,000 pennies.

Here we have Penny the Goose made out of 100,000 Canadian pennies in honor of the last year the Canadian penny will be in circulation.

Penny the Goose at Burning Man 2013

Penny takes off.

Open hands art piece in from of the Center Camp Cafe at Burning Man 2013.

This set of hands created by  David Gertler was located just in front of the Center Camp Cafe.

I liked the simple lines of this lotus-like sculpture. The Truth is Beauty sculpture can be seen in the distance.

I liked the simple lines of this lotus-like sculpture. The Truth is Beauty sculpture can be seen in the distance.

Zonotopia on the Playa at Burning Man 2013.

This unique structure was part of Zonotopia created by artist Rob Bell for Burning Man 2013. (Photo by Peggy Mekemson.)

One of Tom's favorite sculptures was You Are the Key. (Photo by Tom Lovering.)

One of Tom’s favorite sculptures was You Are the Key. (Photo by Tom Lovering.)

Peggy, a crafty woman, liked this knit house. (Photo by Peggy Mekemson.)

Peggy, a crafty kind of woman, liked this crochet house. (Photo by Peggy Mekemson.)

A close up.

A close up.

Xylophage created by the Flaming Lotus Girls for Burning Man 2013.

The Flaming Lotus Girls have been producing quality art at Burning Man for many years. This year’s theme was named Xylophage and included the large burned out stump, this gnome and several humongous mushrooms. Everything, of course, flames at night.

Flaming Lotus Girl's Sculpture at Burning Man 2013.

One of the mushrooms in the Flaming Lotus Girls’ sculpture.

This set of stacked cubes seemed to reach high into the sky.

This set of stacked cubes seemed to reach high into the sky.

"Come over here and catch them from this angle," Tom urged.

“Come over here and catch them from this angle,” Tom urged.

This is only a very small sample of the art found at Burning Man. Later I will visit the regional art but next I want to take you out to what is always one of Burning Man’s top attractions: The Temple. It is truly a sacred area.

15 comments on “A Seven Ton Coyote and Other BRC Wonders… Burning Man 2013

    • Don’t think I’ve come in contact with the word nagual since reading Castaneda.:) But I like coyotes… a lot. Camping out in the deserts of the Southwest and listening to a pack howl at the full moon is a real treat. Like so many wild animals, they are very curious, and given a chance, will study us as much as we study them. –Curt

  1. Thank you for all you share of Burning Man – fabulous sculptures.
    How do they get them in and out – imagining caravans of very large trucks and mountains of bubble wrap 🙂
    Seriously?

    • You are right about the army of trucks, Alison. Normally they come in pieces and are assembled on the spot. BM has a forest of cranes that are used to help in the assembly. Most pieces are up before the event opens but we do get to see some put together. –Curt

  2. It’s funny – the only piece you’ve shown here I’m not fond of is the crocheted house. I come from a family filled with crocheters who thought I ought to get with the program, but it never appealed. Who knows what that’s all about? Still, the house is a pretty cool use for the craft.

    My favorite photo is the sunrise “Believe”. Well, and the drifties, and Penny the Goose. And the stacked cubes.

    The one constant has been the natural light. The effects at night are pretty cool, but I really do prefer the dawn to dusk shots.

    • The crocheted house, from my perspective, demonstrated the great variety of art at Burning Man. But your resistance to crocheting made me chuckle.

      As for daytime vs nighttime, I prefer the daytime art as well but am amazed at how different the art becomes at night. In fact, Burning Man is two different creatures at day and at night. The change in mutant vehicles is particularly dramatic. –Curt

  3. Hey Curt. Great photos of the coyote. Thanks to you and your series I’ve seen lots of wonderful, large scale art. Where does it all go after BM, and how do they get it there. Hopefully all this art lives a second life somewhere. ~ James

    • Burning Man art is gradually making its way out into the world as more and more communities are adopting the pieces, James. Some, such at the Bird Trap Church and Photo Chapel are made to be burned at Burning Man. As is the Temple which is the focus of today’s blog. Large art, such as the Coyote and Truth Is Beauty, can be broken down and transported by semis to be reassembled elsewhere. The Black Rock Arts Foundation, which is funded by Burning Man, was established to help artists produce the work and to get the work back out into local communities. –Curt

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