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Burning Man Journal
All the News That's Fit to Burn — Summer 2002

The Black Rock Arts Foundation

"It is the mission of the Black Rock Arts Foundation to promote a revival of art's culturebearing and connective function by removing art from its context in the marketplace and reintegrating it into communal settings."
— from the Black Rock Arts Mission Statement

Burning Man has become the largest and most significant venue for interactive art in America. In many ways, our event has revolutionized this art form. Year after year, participants in Burning Man have seen the amazing chemistry that happens when interactive art and people are introduced to one another: connections are made, friendships are formed, and the spirit of creative collaboration travels back home.

The Black Rock Arts Foundation has been created to support the art of our community wherever it occurs. The foundation's mission is to provide financial aid, volunteer resources, and connections to other not-for-profit institutions that will nurture the work of artists. We are striving to plant the seeds of Black Rock City culture in other social settings. We are re-imagining what art could be. In many cases, this mission involves helping artists whose work exists outside the mainstream of galleries, museums, and the marketplace. It also means trying to reclaim art as a medium of personal, social, and civic transformation.

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The foundation celebrated its one-year anniversary in early April, when it awarded the first disbursement of artist's grants. (See our website for details: www.blackrockarts.org.) The foundation received its 501c3 not-for-profit status in November 2001, making donations tax-deductible. If Burning Man has changed your life, please help us now by becoming a member. Think about what would happen if what you've experienced, what you find so hard to explain to your friends, your family, your colleagues and neighbors, began to spread its roots in your hometown. Think about what would happen if this transformation started to occur across the country.

Anyone can become involved in projects supported by the Black Rock Arts Foundation, artists and non-artists alike: anyone with a creative impulse who feels the need for a new kind of society. One of our first major community-based projects in 2003 will be an Artists' Exchange program between San Francisco and New York City. But, if you are among the majority of participants who live elsewhere, we need your creative ideas. Tell us what could happen where you are. Tell us what you're willing to do to make it happen. Please help by giving to the gift that you've received. You can start now by becoming a member and making a financial contribution (see the enclosed order form), but this is only the beginning. As a member of the Foundation you will receive a quarterly email newsletter that will profile artists and describe our ongoing efforts. You will also be invited to participate in online discussions about interactive art and society with Larry Harvey and a variety of our community's artists. In the future, we also hope to invite Foundation members to meet Burning Man organizers and participate in art events at Black Rock Station in Nevada. Begin this dialogue now, and tell us how you can help. Contact us at info(at)blackrockarts(dot)org or call 415.626.1248. Check out our website for info on our grant recipients. www.blackrockarts.org.