Experiment in Temporary Community
Is this live entertainment? No. Hardly. It’s barely even entertaining. But it’s a good thing for people to do when they are together, meeting , being educated, sharing knowledge — working on artwork together. Exploring new ideas. Maybe even naked in their workshop.
Through me you enter into the city of woes,
Through me you enter into eternal pain,
Through me you enter the population of loss,
Abandon all hope, you who enter here. — Dante Alighieri
This year in the Black Rock Desert the Burning Man Project presents The Inferno — a rendering of Hell in our postmodern age. The place we know as Hell has been portrayed in many ways. It is most frequently an after-world, an abode of the dead, and one’s journey through it is a trial or initiation. Our own interpretation is adapted from the Hell of Dante Alighieri as it derives from Hades, the underworld of ancient Greece. Guarded by terrifying monsters — the Furies, Medusa, and Cerberus, the three-headed dog of Hell — it will be a place where every sin and folly of our age is catalogued, held up for public view, and punished… Most fundamentally, throughout successive ages Hell has been a place of banishment. Whatever we wish to cast out of our world or out of ourselves is here destined to reappear and confront us. Unlike Heaven, the home of the perfect, Hell is, and will always be, a supremely ironic place.