Catacomb of Veils- Burning Man 2016, Part 4 of 4: The Scope

Part 4 of 4: THE SCOPE

Catacomb of Veils will be the largest art piece at Burning Man 2016 and one of the largest burned sculptures in the history of the event.

Everyone participating in the creation of Catacomb is all-volunteer with a commitment to the transformative power of temporary art.




Part 1: The Project

Screen Shot 2016-07-11 at 11.13.41 AM

Part 2: The Inspiration

Part 3: The Team

The profound beauty of the Catacomb of Veils is not only the design, the volunteers, the commitment, the structure itself- it is the TEMPORARY aspect of the project and of Burning Man itself.

It is there and then it is gone.

Burning Man 2016 takes place August 28 – September 5, 2016 in the Black Rock Desert of Nevada. Participants join in the effort to co-create Black Rock City, a temporary metropolis dedicated to art and community. [source]

Every year Black Rock City (the festival’s temporary town) becomes Nevada’s third biggest city.  Littering or leaving garbage (‘MOOP’) behind is Burner sacrilege.  Hundreds of volunteers spend the month after Burning Man meticulously combing the sand for MOOP (Matter Out Of Place). [source]

This is my favorite part of doing wheatpasting and street art- the TEMPORARY, THE EVOLUTION, THE RELEASE: once pasted, the piece evolves and deteriorates…

Screen Shot 2016-07-11 at 10.27.58 AM

Screen Shot 2016-07-11 at 10.37.09 AM

Emily wheatpasting my portrait of “Thane” at 119 East Cordova, Vancouver Feb 13, 2013


Nature and the elements and the interaction by the community has become essential to my creative process.

So the temporary aspect of Burning Man resonates as does the burn for I also LOVE to burn my art (which was easier when I lived on the Sunshine Coast)-

What does it mean to allow the BURN- to release?

Therein lies the SCOPE of the Catacomb of Veils.  

For me, it is about tears and grief, air and perspective, anger and earth, fire and release, allowing past and present and future to breathe.

Bitterness is like cancer. It eats upon the host. But anger is like fire. It burns it all clean. – Maya Angelou

So I celebrate the incredible artistry and vision and hard work of Catacomb of Veils and its metaphoric POWER of BUILDING, WELCOMING COMMUNITY, INTERACTING and RELEASING!  And thus forever TRANSFORMING the participants…

I like to think of it as an opportunity for introspection and reflection, but ultimately the community will get to determine how it is. If it’s for ritual purposes, or for an introspective reflection, or a personal journey. It’s kind of not for me to decide… – Dan Sullivan

Screen Shot 2016-07-11 at 11.01.21 AM
Photo by Vincent Lefevre

Catacomb Crew:




Screen Shot 2016-07-07 at 7.53.20 PM


Screen Shot 2016-07-08 at 9.38.41 PM


Screen Shot 2016-07-08 at 9.43.14 PM

One Comment Add yours

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *