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Dharma On the Playa

The Spring 2014 issue of Tricycle magazine features several of my photographs from Burning Man paired with an insightful and beautifully written piece by contributing editor Allan Badiner. The article describes Badiner’s first experience at Burning Man in 2013. It was a journey he had avoided making for many years, he says, but reluctantly agreed to in 2013 in order to accept a speaking invitation. Once there, he was taken in by the event and struck by the curious parallels between Burning Man some of the core practices and rituals at the heart of Buddhism:

Traveling the playa, experiencing scenes from the fantastic to the crudely immature and everything in between, I found more improbable resonance creeping into my awareness between this artsy hi-tech desert ritual and Buddhist ways of being. From the generosity, nonjudgment, and eightfold path-like principles practiced by Burners to the sacred geometry of the city’s layout to everyone’s acceptance that it would all disappear in a matter of days, the playa was permeated with a Buddhist view of life.

And while Burning Man is of an entirely different character, it did have its similarities to a Zen retreat: attendees are hoping for a shift in their perspectives; people are, for the most part, on their best interpersonal behavior; and they take on new names, sleep less, and have amazing insights. Unlike the program at a Zen retreat, many people simply come to dance all week, make love, or blow their minds open with psychedelics. But everyone has permission to follow their dreams and pursue what makes them happy, without judgment. And while some found happiness in pursuing sense pleasures, others took solace in yoga, meditation, and intellectual inquiry. The vast variety of intentions and possibilities don’t seem to separate Burners from one another; rather, it unites them.

Check out the complete article here: Dharma On the Playa

Here’s a peek at the spreads:

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On the Newsstand

My photographs from Burning Man appear in several magazines currently on the newsstand. The new issue of Nevada Magazine includes a ten-page cover story titled “Images of Burning Man” with many of my photos. The latest Public Art Review features an article by Louis Brill titled “Burning Man Photographers.” The piece showcases the work of several photographers and makes the point that while public art is often the subject of Burning Man photos, some images from the event deserve to be called art in their own right. In addition, the French magazine Néosapiens includes a full-page photo of mine from the 2004 festival. Finally, the glossy German travel magazine ADAC Reisemagazin featured a pictorial on Burning Man a few months ago in a special issue on the American west. Sierra Magazine will also publish a photo of mine from last year’s festival in their upcoming issue.