Best Burning Man 2013 Reads + Photos


"Burning Man 2013"

"How I Got F*cked by Burning Man, and Other Sacred Ceremonies"

"Radical Inclusion vs. Radical Self-Reliance at Burning Man"

"An Emotional Survival Guide to Burning Man: Be open. Be intimate. Be human."

"Sixteen signs you’re still in Playa mode after Burning Man"

Photo Essays




(above) "10 things i learnt at burning man. {2013: the sexy, crazy, transcendental… and everything in between}"

"24 Hours at Burning Man"

"It was the biggest Burning Man ever, and this is what I saw there"

Photo Galleries


^ Trey Radcliffe



^ Scott London



^ Michael Holden


^ Neil Girling / The Blight



^ Rolling Stone Magazine

Symbiosis Gathering 2013 : Part 3 : Everything else!

Well, kiddos, here we go with the third of three dBM blog posts exploring Symbiosis Gathering 2013, five days of art, music, community, interaction, ceremony and nature being held over the Autumnal Equinox—which is also the Harvest Full Moon—at Woodward Reservoir in Oakdale, California, September 19-23. You can get tickets, camping information and everything else you might need at symbiosisgathering.com.

Part one looked at the deeper intentions that go in to creating Symbiosis gatherings, and what makes them different than your average summer music festival. Part two delved in to the musical offerings spread out across four unique stages. And we're going to close out with a round-up of the rest of the features that beckon us to the gathering grounds….


The Venue:

Surrounded on three sides by crystal clear water, floaties encouraged! Only 90 minutes east of the Bay area, this year's Symbiosis gathering grounds look the perfect place to give summer a goodbye kiss and make the turn towards Autumnal energies. More photos at http://www.symbiosisgathering.com/venue/

Click here for "Symbiosis Gathering 2013 with Micha and Leighton" if video isn't displaying properly above. From Symbiosis Gathering on Vimeo.


The Edwardian Ball Roadshow:

from the website:

The Edwardian Ball is an elegant and whimsical celebration of art, music, theatre, fashion, technology, circus, and the beloved creations of the late, great author Edward Gorey. Set in our own version of “Edwardian” era, this multi-media extravaganza has grown over the past fourteen years, from a small underground party into an internationally recognized festival, even garnering the blessing of The Edward Gorey Charitable Trust.

Costumed and enthusiastic attendees, traveling from all reaches of the globe, gather for a delightful blend of ballroom dancing, live music, riveting stage shows, DJs, fine art galleries, absinthe cocktails, steam machinery, parlour games, sideshows, and our highly acclaimed Vendor Bazaar. All ages are welcome in this darkly humorous and elegant setting, where literary aficionados rub elbows with insect-like creatures parading on stilts… where Edwardian recreationists waltz past the steam-powered tea garden… where the only guiding rule is that you join in on the fun!


On the stage...

Vau de Vire Society
Rosin Coven
Dark Garden
Shakti Bliss
Fou Fou HA
The Klown Korps

Out and about...

Living Statue Garden
Portrait Booth
Klown Croquet
Ballroom Dancing
and much more…



from the website:

We are here to SHARE LOVE, HEALING, INTENTION and hold the sacred container of CREATION for the Kidzbiosis tribe through fun and activating workshops in ENERGYPLAY, SOUND & CRYSTAL EXPLORATION, SACRED GEOMETRY, ECSTATIC DANCE and engagement of I AM PRESENCE with youth and community! Join us in our mystical FAMILY GARDEN, where all people are participants, all children are FAERIES and HEROES and all DREAMS COME TRUE in the blink of an eye!"

There's a Fairy Teahouse, Imagination Station 3D live mural mandala, dragon parade and even unicorn horn making for the little festivarians!

ps. can we talk about the MUSIC!?!

So, Destination Burning Man is heading south in a couple of days for Symbiosis and we hope to see old friends and make new ones! symbiosisgathering.com. whoopwhoop!

Symbiosis Gathering 2013 : Part 2 : The Music


With over 100 different DJs, bands, producers, singers and composers playing on four stages over five days, trying to comprehend the musical side of Symbiosis gets downright overwhelming pretty quick. The line-up is quite unlike any other summer festival from either coast: idiosyncratic, unpredictable, adventurous, taking risks. A mix of new and old, known and unknown, representing genres of bass and dance music from across the wide spectrum. The gathering promises an orgy of delicious sounds regardless of what muse you follow over the long weekend.

Many of the artists are well-known and well-loved by
longtime dBMcast listeners -- we've played the hell out of Vibesquad, Bluetech, Gladkill, Mount Kimbie, Phaeleh, Russ Liquid, Kalya Scintilla, Ana Sia, Thriftworks, Pumpkin, Kaminanda, Rab, Sun:Monx, The Human Experience, Plantrae, Desert Dwellers, Michael Menert, Ott, DJ Cheb i Sabbah, An-ten-ae and Emancipator. It boggles our mind, and frankly makes us wonder how we'll survive this much high-end advanced Bass Chakra Therapy all at once. Pray for us.

We're also familiar with, or looking forward to experiencing more of, artists including Bird of Prey, ODESZA, JPod, Knowa Knowone, Dov, Gaudi, Jamie Janover, Christian Martin, Lynx, Treavor Moontribe, Christian Martin and Sidecar Tommy.


And best of all perhaps is the element of surprise. We've learned that being able to put faith in a festival's organizer, to trust in both their intentions and their musical tastes, is a great gift. To be able to simply show up and not worry about any musical schedule, instead flowing from stage to stage based on a combination of randomness and synchronicity, and know that you're in good hands, that whatever music you encounter is going to move you, surprise you, intrigue you, entertain you, take you to places you didn't imagine…..this is pure bliss!

Based on what we've discovered about the Symbiosis Gathering founders and organizers' vision and integrity, as well as past lineups, as well as a close study of this year's lineup, Destination Burning Man is predicting that
everyone present is going to be blown away.

Of course, there are dozens more we haven't mentioned, in part because there are many names we don't know much about—haven't gotten to yet—including most of the large-font-size headliners like Policia, Iamwhoiam, Hudson Mohawke, RL Grime, Lunice, Brodinski, Chet Faker and, yes, even Shpongle and STS9.


Whether or not you're planning on making it to Symbiosis at Woodward Reservoir on September 19-23, aka the Harvest Moon, aka the Autumnal Equinox, you can dig in deep to the diverse musical line-up by checking out this new dBMcast—the Symbiotic Sampler—mixed by both DJ Playaduster and Kaya Rainface and featuring over 20 of the artists playing for us at the gathering: http://www.destinationburningman.com/stuff/podcasts/files/symbiosis-sampler.html

Also, Symbiosis has curated three music compilations of singles from many of the DJs and bands, and they're available for free stream or download via

For a look at the full line-up and day-to-day breakdown, visit

Sun stage photo by Rafael Reynolds of MuchThumpPhoto.com.

Symbiosis Gathering 2013 : Part 1 : Overview, roots, intentions….

Symbiosis banner

If the DoLab’s Lightning in a Bottle can be understood as the spring kick-off for Transformational Festival season, and Burning Man as its fiery apex in late summer, then surely Symbiosis is the grounding grand finale on the Autumnal Equinox.

The 2013 Symbiosis Gathering will be held September 19-23 at the Woodward Reservoir Regional Park in California, about 90 minutes east of the Bay area. Like past Gatherings, it offers a dizzying array of attractions, including four stages packed with live bands and electronic producers, the Edwardian Ball Roadshow featuring an “immersive, magical world of theatrical entertainment with an eccentric assortment of music, aerial acrobatics, circus acts, offbeat fashion and ballroom dancing,” interactive art installations and thoughtfully-curated chill spaces, healing arts, healthy food vending, yoga, classes on topics including capoeira, improv, spoken word, permaculture, parenting and even mushroom science, artisanal crafts and clothing vending, presentations by Saul Williams, The Yes Men, Dennis McKenna, The Second City, Rainforest Action Network and others, and, when your brain is full, a lake for swimming and splashing.

As you can plainly see, Symbiosis is not just another music festival nor a laid-back West Coast hippie campout. Since its’ conception, the Gathering has been envisioned to be something unique, all-encompassing, a “multi-dimensional event” where the sum is greater than all of its diverse parts.

Symbiosis Gatherings, as their mission statement declares, “intend to facilitate peak experiences through a synaesthesia of art, music, transformational learning, and sustainable living integrated into an unparalleled extravaganza of fun beneath the starry skies."

Symbiosis Gathering... from Symbiosis Gathering on Vimeo.

Yes, the music, art and performances at Symbiosis will be mind-blowing, without any doubt. But there is a deeper level to this particular gathering that makes it intriguing, and binds it in to an underground network of other progressive events that seek to inspire, educate and transform: Burning Man, Lightning in a Bottle, The Great Convergence, Shambhala, Beloved, Photosynthesis, even Rainbow Gatherings and Grateful Dead shows of days gone by.

Reality Sandwich explains, “Based on ancient community gatherings, the modern festival serves a profound purpose in the turbulent landscape of our times.”

Jacob Devaney, founder of the Culture Collective,
furthers, explaining that “we need places to immerse ourselves in new ways of living together, think-tanks for symbiotic expression and understanding in order to cultivate…a living practice to benefit the broader web around us instead of merely exploiting it for financial gain.”

But perhaps Symbiosis co-founder Kevin KoChen, quoting Alan Kay, sums it up best: "The best way to predict the future is to invent it.”

KoChen was recently profiled by Reality Sandwich, providing context to the motivations behind Symbiosis Gatherings:

Armed with a team of artists and dreamers, KoChen sees his life’s goal as assisting in the expansion of consciousness through event crafting. By creating these environments and allowing attendees to live in what he considers both a futuristic and an ancient society, he is supporting this community’s growth towards positive, universal purpose…

“Festivals represent a moment out of time for people where they can be free to live in a village of enjoyment,” said KoChen. “It provides a space for people to ask deeper questions or celebrate with good friends and being alive in a beautiful world. Festivals can inspire us that life is not simply about being busy and earning money, but it’s about experiencing ourselves, our community, and artistic beauty in our beautiful world.”

KoChen bases his interest in event crafting in the ancient societies he studied during his traditional education. By looking toward the examples from the past, and applying their practices to today’s technological culture, he has carved out a niche of meaningful connection in a world characterized by turbulence.

Another insightful exploration in to this emerging trend of Transformational Festival culture is The Bloom Series, a multi-part documentary web series that is well worth watching. Check out the first two episodes, featuring footage of past Symbiosis Gatherings, at http://thebloomseries.com.

Check back next week for Part Two of Destination Burning Man’s exploration of the 2013 Symbiosis Gathering, with a focus
on the music you’ll hear at the festival.

For more information and tickets, visit

dBM on Facebook


Just a quick note to let y'all know that we're uploading photos, videos, articles, links and tons more from Burning Man 2013 over on our Facebook page:

A report from Photosynthesis Festival


Here's a report from one of the smaller, regional, West Coast festies Get Found attended this summer as part of our NW travels in lieu of going to Burning Man this summer….cross-posted from our dBMcast page.

dBMcast#129: Photosynthesis : Into the Dream Dome

Mixed by Kaya Rainface, August 2013
Here's some Jedi Goddess Ninja Healer Mermaid Wizard music, inspired by the Photosynthesis Festival held at Hobuck Beach in the far northwestern corner of Washington State July 19-21, 2013 and mixed up by Kaya Rainface for Destination Burning Man. This set evokes the sacred bass celebrations held in the Dream Dome, tapping in to dream states, dream flights, subconscious massages & third eye galaktivations, a space where fantasies morph in to altered realities….let this musical sacrament take you to the places where you access your subliminal sides & express your secret powers!

Jon Hopkins "Sun Harmonics"
Subaqueous "Invoking"
Kaminanda "Liquid Sunrise"
Plantrae "Taiga Bloom"
Drumpyder remixes "Shiva Ntaraj > Bodhi Mandala" (Desert Dwellers)
Aligning Minds "In the Wake of Forever"
Osiris "Immersion > Sole Diver"
Kalpatura Tree "Naked Soul Dub"
Kalya Scintilla "From Day to Night and Back Again"
Elephant Revival "The Raven Song"
Russ Liquid "New Beginnings"

Photosynthesis began with a ritual. An elder from the Makah tribe—we were holding our gathering on their tribal lands, at their invitation—said prayers in his native tongue and then blessed the ground we would dance upon all weekend by sprinkling white puffs of eagle down from his medicine bag. It was an offering that galaktivated the Dream Dome. The line-up of DJs—combined with the visionary artists, VJs, tea servers, dancers and many wild, organic shrines—created a deep vibe that persisted over three long nights of ritual and dancing. The swollen moon waxed in the heavens above, ravens and eagles flew overhead and the hypnotic roar of the Pacific Ocean backdropped everything.

Plantrae playing violin and dropping botanical beats in the Dream Dome

In this mix, Jon Hopkins gives the opening invocation with "Sun Harmonics," appropriate for Photosynthesizers beneath a grey blanket of sea fog and salty mist. The rest of the artists contribute to the musical journey in more or less the order they performed in the Dream Dome over the weekend: amazing contributions from (mostly) West Coast/Pacific Northwest producers Subaqueous, Kaminanda, Plantrae, Drumspyder, Aligning Minds, Osiris, Kalpatura Tree and Kalya Scintilla. Elephant Revival shares a closing prayer with "Raven Song" and, as we drift off from the Dream Dome at dawn, the sounds of Russ Liquid coming from the Mandala Dome carry us home to our tents in the trees….

I should note that Hopkins and Elephant Revival did not play at Photosynthesis, but their opening and closing mantras to the mix are in alignment with the Dream Dome vibe and we're happy to have them!

Visionary art in the Dream Dome

The vocals are Makah elders speaking in their indigenous language, including a whaling chant. They are incorporated in Kaya Rainface's mix in the spirit of respect for their culture and gratitude for letting us gather to dance, celebrate, commune and heal on their ancestral land. You'll also hear elements of the land: waves crashing, birds calling, winds blowing…it was an overcast and somewhat chilly weekend, though we were spared rain, and the chill brought us closer together around campfires.

Kalya Scintilla closes the weekend ritual Sunday night in the Dream Dome

Gratitude. We are grateful to the DJs, artists, dancers, temple builders and festival organizers. See you back at Hobuck next year!


Ahmed's 2011 Burn, by day and by night

A short glimpse of a Burning Man experience by Ahmed. Shot in August/September 2011 using a (very dusty) Canon 7D with 70-200 f.40L, a 50mm 1.8, and a 10-24mm Tamron. If you are interested in checking out more of his work, visit ahmedelhusseiny.com

"Profiles in Dust" Part 3: The Art of Burning Man 2011

“Profiles in Dust” Crew:
Justin Gunn—Supervising Producer/ Editor Terry Pratt—Producer/ Director of Photography Gregory Sklar—Co-Executive Producer, Management & Logistics Michael Fasman—Producer Tom Greene—Producer Noelle Charles—Producer Christopher Breedlove—Producer Mike Hedge—Additional Camera Ben Page—GoPro Cameraman Timothy Palmer—Motion Graphics Design Robert Gibbs—Logistics and Artist Relations Colin “Donkeyboy” Creveling—Graphic Design Atom Smith—Music Shpongle—Music Transcenders—Music Tom LaPorte—Executive Producer

"Profiles in Dust" Part 2: The Art of Burning Man 2011

"Profiles in Dust" Part 1: The Art of Burning Man 2011

“At the 2011 Burn, a small group of talented video producers and friends got generous. As part of a public relations gift initiative, they undertook to produce video treatments of selected art projects. The idea was to give Burning Man artists the benefit of what Media Team members do well, and to give the artists new tools to promote their work, their teams and their dreams.

The videos on this blog have all been gifted to the artists, and are beingsimultaneously made available to you. They are an example of how unexpected generosity serves new friends in original ways, just as it serves art in new ways. These “Profiles in Dust” are a gift from the Burning Man Media Team to all artists and Burners, whether depicted in this collection of films or not….It’s truly amazing what happens when talent and inspiration unite with the spirit of gifting.


From the Burning Blog: Welcome to the BIG CITY and BRIGHT LIGHTS, where it is said “If you can make it there, you can make it anywhere,” and in Black Rock City by “it” I mean ART and by “make it there” I mean live, breathe, eat, sleep, follow your vision, work your ass off, raise your money, maintain cohesion in your group, create your dream and behold it there.

Then take a breath and load your trucks and
GET OUT TO THE PLAYA to work another week or more in circumstances only someone as MAD as a Burning Man Artist could appreciate to put the thing up, all for the sake of GIFTING IT and SHARING your VISION with all of our FAIR CITY.

We are all like 40 THOUSAND moths attracted to those
ENCHANTING PLAYA LIGHTS, twinkling and glowing all alone in the dark expanse, and the essence of ART is CREATION and CREATION is the ACTION of MAGIC.

So to this year’s ARTISTS, I say
THANK YOU for your MAGICAL GIFTS, one and all.

click for more…

"I have one life and I would be damned if I live as a fool "

what happens when you set a typewriter up in the middle of nowhere desert at Burning Man and invite people to write whatever they want (via a self-servicing station)?

Many, many more at http://www.sunflowerrobots.com/timelovememory

Hot Links for BRC '09

Photo by John Curley; Center Camp 2009.

Required reading: The 2009 Survival Guide. The Evolution theme. First-time's Guide. FAQ. The Ten Principles. 2009 Honorarium Art Installations. An audio art tour of the playa.

Building Black Rock City, including Center Camp and Temple construction and the landing of the Raygun Gothic Rocketship. An awesome interactive map to this year's theme camps.

The Arctic Monkey's
Completely Unofficial Burning Man Guide & Packing List. Matt's guide to photography at Burning Man. Stoke-enhancing playa videos. Downloadable soundtracks for playa explorations. Da'Bomb's Best of Burncast reports and BurncastTV episodes on Vimeo, including an emotional tribute to Burners Who Have Passed On. The "Go Bag."

Rideshare. Driving directions. Black Rock City weather forecast. 24-7 Live Gerlach webcam. And BMIR 94.5 FM should start broadcasting any day now.

3G cell phone service on the playa?

on-playa WHOMP schedule. Disorient's new Art Car Wash (and the return of Dex!). Unverified Sound Camp DJ programmes at Root Society and Opulent Temple, Simpler Times (The Do-Lab + Cirque Bezerk=SICKNESS), Basscamp, Bootie, False Profit, Rock Bottom, Space Cowboys, Shift Camp and Disorient. PleasureSean's Playa Party Guide. Or, skip all the preceding links and take it straight to Rockstar Librarian's essential 4-page schedule of DJs and dance parties at Burning Man 2009.

The Onion is reporting that nobody made it to Burning Man this year.

Love and dust, moontroll --
see you in a few days!

PS. Apparently, some people take drugs at Burning Man. That what
some blogger claims anyway:

click for more…

Green Man icon

Found this unofficial icon on Flickr in the Green Man 2007 pool

click for more…