Burning Man

Black Rock City, California
Collective / Barter
Pop-Up / Art Colony

1 Center Camp 2 Walk-In Camping Area

Begun as a solstice bonfire in 1986, Burning Man appears as, and markets itself as, the ultimate confluence of cyberculture and counterculture, the projective and the regressive, forward looking and backward turning. In this space the hacker is the new hippie and Silicon Valley Utopianism is the natural legacy of a movement based on self-sufficiency and liberty.

Fred Turner referred to Burning Man as a cultural infrastructure, an ideological scaffolding on which socialized labor and new forms of manufacturing depend. “Burning Man can be seen as a manifestation of the sentimentality and spirit of the Bay Area, compressed into an intense, week-long ordeal: techies, hippies, individualists, creatives/artists and progressives all living in close proximity, thrown together into an uncontrolled mix. A giant social experiment of sorts, organized into a ceremonial ritual, conducted year after year.”

It is a space of ritualistic regression, voluntary primitivism, or extreme escapism. It concretizes the “commons-based peer production” and enforces the collaborative socialized labor necessitated by tech companies. Much of what is codified in the Burning Man Principles is reflected in corporate culture.

Nam semper semper ex
In porttitor pellentesque sapien

Annie Schneider

Communes in the New World

The question of how to live together—of how best to live together—is the foundation of any society. The last few years have exposed the fault lines in our current system: climatic catastrophe, economic crisis, supply chain collapse, civil unrest, rampant inequality, and a global pandemic. We live in congested cities and in potentially dangerous proximity, yet remain isolated. In light of these mounting pressures, it’s time to revisit the fundamentals. How to Live Together offers alternative ways of being, thinking, dwelling, and living. It calls into question every basic assumption and prevailing social norm: belief, sex, the nuclear family, property ownership, our relationship to land, production, and consumption. It is both a critique and a roadmap.