Compass of the Ephemeral: Aerial Photography of Black Rock City through the Lens of Will Roger

Compass of the Ephemeral: Aerial Photography of Black Rock City through the Lens of Will Roger


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"Roger’s photos turn the Burning Man festival itself into a piece of art." —John Przybys, Las Vegas Review Journal

Burning Man is a cultural celebration of the iconoclastic; a merger of art, thought, poetry, social awakening, and freedom. From its original inception through 2018, Nevada artist and Burning Man event co-founder Will Roger photographs the ever-changing cityscape and transformation of Black Rock City throughout the years.

A look at Black Rock City needs to reflect the spirit of Burning Man. This book contains a substantial collection of aerial photos as never seen before, which is a photographic collaboration between Will Roger and Burning Man architect Rod Garrett, but it becomes even more with the Introduction by Burning Man co-founder Harley Dubois, and poetry and essay contributions from Independent scholar William Fox and Archaeologist Alexei Vranich. 

"This book provides some insight and documentation into the development and growth of the temporary metropolis that is created and disappears each year on Nevada’s Black Rock Desert. It tells the story of growth, community engagement and artistic interaction." —James Gabriel Martin, Lonely Planet

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780977880652
Publisher: Smallworks Press
Publication date: 06/18/2019
Pages: 216
Sales rank: 1,194,971
Product dimensions: 8.20(w) x 10.10(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Will Roger is an artist, teacher, innovator, and environmentalist. He is a co-founder of Black Rock City, LLC, the company that has produced the Burning Man event for nearly 20 years. Roger has served as a co-founder of the Black Rock Art Foundation and President of Friends of the Black Rock-High Rock. He is also an accomplished photographer, having attained his MFA in Photography from the Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) and later served as a photochemist, Associate Professor, and Assistant Director for RIT.

William L. Fox is a writer, independent scholar, and poet whose work focuses on how human cognition transforms land into landscape. He was born in San Diego and attended Claremont McKenna College. Fox has worked as a consulting editor for university presses and served as director of the poetry program for the Squaw Valley Community of Writers. In the visual arts, Fox has exhibited text works in more than two dozen group and solo exhibitions in seven countries. He has served as the Associate Director of the Nevada Museum of Art and as the visual arts and architecture critic for the Reno Gazette-Journal. Fox is currently the lead strategist for the Art and Environment initiative at the Nevada Museum of Art.

Tony “Coyote” Perez-Banuet is a co-founder of the Department of Public Works of Black Rock City and has served as City Superintendent for twenty years. Known as the “Bard of the Desert," telling stories around the campfire is among the things he does best. He has been blogging under the moniker of “Coyote Nose” for many years, and he is Burning Man’s first Storytelling Fellow.

A founding member of Black Rock City LLC, Harley K. Dubois has over 25 years of project management, art, and city planning experience. As the City Manager of Black Rock City, Harley oversees both the Playa Safety Council and Community Services departments, ensuring the citizens of BRC are happy and safe. She originated theme camp placement, the Greeters, Playa Info, and Burning Man Information Radio, along with initiating the development of all other Community Service teams. Harley also created and maintains a comprehensive training and self-development program for the Burning Man staff, fostering volunteerism, and cross-departmental communication.

Alexei Vranich received his BA from the University of California, Berkeley, and his Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania. He has extensive research experience around the world and has been recognized by the National Science Foundation for his innovative application of technology in studying history. Bridging the divide between academic and popular archaeology, Alexei has appeared in television channels and magazines such as National Geographic, The Sciences, and Archaeology Magazine. Alexei is currently conducting archaeological research in Cusco, Peru, the former capital of the Inca Empire.

Crimson Rose is a co-founder of Burning Man and the Black Rock Arts Foundation. She began participating in the Burning Man event in 1991 and developed the organization’s Art Department, including the infrastructure and support services that make possible the large-scale participatory artworks that Burning Man is renowned for. Many of these works find public placement in cities around the world and serve as catalytic sparks for community collaboration. Rose is an instigator of creative energy and Creative Director of the Fire Conclave, the largest gathering of fire performers in the world.

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