Burning Man’s 30-Ton “Disco Ball”

"The ORB" art installation for the 2018 edition of Burning Man. Credit: BIG
“The ORB” art installation for the 2018 edition of Burning Man. Credit: BIG

“The ORB” is an eye-catching art installation designed by a group of architects and artists led by Bjarke Ingels and Jakob Lange from Copenhagen, Denmark, for Burning Man, the popular festival running from August 26th until September 3rd, 2018, in the Black Rock Desert, Nevada.

Inspired by NASA’s Project Echo, the inflatable 30-ton disco ball created by the world-renowned Danish architecture practice BIG (Bjarke Ingels Group) aims to turn public life into a public artifact.

"The ORB" art installation for the 2018 edition of Burning Man. Credit: BIG
“The ORB” art installation for the 2018 edition of Burning Man. Credit: BIG

“The ORB is a giant sphere, scaled to 1/500,000th of the earth’s surface, with a diameter of nearly 100 feet. The ORB finds itself at the axis of Art & Utility, capturing the entire Black Rock City in an airborne temporal monument that mirrors the Burning Man experience to the Burners as single beings in the midst of an intentional community,” the group’s description of the giant reflective art piece reads. “Visible from most of The Playa, it will help Burners navigate the desert and find [their] way.”

"The ORB" art installation for the 2018 edition of Burning Man. Credit: BIG
“The ORB” art installation for the 2018 edition of Burning Man. Credit: BIG

Initially held in 1986 in San Francisco’s Baker Beach, Burning Man is a cultural event that has been since taking place at Black Rock City, an ephemeral crescent-shaped “city” erected in the Black Rock Desert. The yearly festival is known worldwide for alluring thousands of people who love experimenting in art. One of the event’s highlights is the symbolic ritual in which art enthusiasts can watch a large wooden effigy, also known as, “The Man” being set on fire amidst the desert.

The over 20-foot-tall marionette that was presented during the 2017 edition of Burning Man. Credit: Burning Man Journal/John Curley
The over 20-foot-tall marionette that was presented during the 2017 edition of Burning Man. Credit: Burning Man Journal/John Curley

If you want to see “The ORB” coming to life during this year’s Burning Man festival, you are encouraged to support the architecture firm’s crowdfunding campaign launched via Indiegogo. If you decide to contribute, you will be offered juicy perks such as prints, postcards, engraved sphere sculptures, as well as private visits inside the artwork.

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