Luke Blackstone


paper, magnifying lens, brief case, sewing machine treddle, wire, umbrella, preserving jar, battery, various electronic and electromechanical devices
temporarily set up at Burning Man Festival near Gerlach, Nevada, 1999

An electronic controller, mounted in a brief case, moved the paper and lens assemblies in a way that they tracked the sun as it traveled across the sky. Various timers moved the paper and lens so patterns on the paper were produced by the burning rays of the sun. With different timer adjustments, different patterns were burned into the paper. Wind direction and clouds also affected the markings. The paper could easily be replaced, permitting several “writings” to be created by solar rays. This piece was set up during the Burning Man Festival ‘99 in Nevada, and allowed to operate for 4 days, and later exhibited at the Community Arts Council Gallery in Vancouver and the Esther Claypool Gallery in Seattle. After some modifications, it was set up near the top of Seymour Mountain in North Vancouver to burn additional patterns.
Some of the burnings were sandwiched in glass and mounted in aluminum frameworks. Elements of the experience were integrated into the frameworks such as clay from the playa, and books with appropriate subject matter. Two of these works were donated to auctions to raise funds for worthy causes, and another remains in my home as a reminder of the Burning Man experience.