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Self Expression Rules at Black Rock

By Linda Tancs

Starting today through 7 September an annual experiment in communal living and survival–the Burning Man Festival–welcomes guests in Black Rock Desert in northwestern Nevada. What is Burning Man? As the organizers will tell you, it defies description; it’s to be lived to be believed. I’ll offer an analogy: it’s a sort of Woodstock for the intellectually curious, but be sure to bring your own towels. In fact, bring anything you’d need to survive. Each year’s event has its own theme. Draw your own conclusions about the festival from these past monikers: Fertility, Time, Hell, Outer Space, The Body, The Floating World, Beyond Belief, Vault of Heaven, Psyche, Hope and Fear, The Green Man, and The American Dream. The theme for 2009 is Evolution. Of course, as with any movement in self expression, there’s art: performances, sculpture, installations and costumes. And, of course, the Man. This year, the Man will burn on the evening of 5 September.

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