Every year, participants in the Burning Man Festival descend on the playa of Nevada’s Black Rock Desert to form a temporary city — a self-reliant community populated by performers, artists, free spirits, and more. Last week, an estimated 68,000 people came to Burning Man 2013 from all over the world to dance, express themselves, and take in the spectacle which lasted a week and came to its conclusion on 9/2/2013. Visitors were able to witness first-hand the famous Burning Man figure (otherwise known as The Man) and the spaceship-like pavilion he’s standing on burn dramatically to the ground.
The art theme for Burning Man 2013 was Cargo Cult which is based on the history of the Melanesians worshiping a mysterious deity figure named John Frum. As the Burning Man website explains, “Our story begins in Melanesia during World War II. Thousands of American GIs suddenly descended on this South Sea island chain, bearing with them unimaginable riches: magical foodstuffs that never spoiled, inconceivable power sources. Just as abruptly the troops departed, leaving only broken, rusted Jeeps, crumpled beer cans, and the memory of Spam. To the astonished eyes of the natives, this was a miraculous occurrence, and they yearned for the return of abundance. Accordingly, they built totemic sky-craft in an attempt to summon back these Visitors and their legendary leader, the man the Melanesians called John Frum. They had formed a Cargo Cult.”
The impressive Main Pavilion was designed by Lewis Zaumeyer.
(Source: The Atlantic)