Burning Man sells art, sculptures, mutant vehicles, and more amid financial blows
Burning Man has partnered with auction house Sotheby’s to sell works of art, sculptures and other ephemeral items associated with the Desert Festival, reports Billboard.
The auction comes as the non-profit event aims to stay afloat amid two years of festivals canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Dubbed ‘Boundless Space: The Possibilities Of Burning Man’, features over 100 works by artists both inside and outside the Burning Man community, with a special focus on BIPOC artists.
Items are open for auction until October 8 and include paintings, sculptures, NFTs, and mutant vehicles, as well as experiences like stilt walking lessons. Prices for some items are currently in the tens of thousands of dollars.
The auction took place after 80s hip hop legend and Burning Man board member Fab Five Freddy told Sotheby’s CEO Charles F. Stewart that Burning Man needed to collect funds due to losses suffered during the coronavirus pandemic. As a result, Sotheby’s waived some of its fees on the auction, and some artists donated works for free or agreed to receive only part of the proceeds.
It is hoped that the auction will keep Burning Man afloat until it plans to start selling tickets for its 2022 edition in January.
Burning Man CEO Marian Goodell told Billboard, “We’re going to have to start selling tickets or else we don’t have enough money. We have money to barely get to the end of the day. ‘year. The auction is going to be important. “
Having generated nearly $ 43 million from its 2019 event, Burning Man organizers claim they lost 90% of the event’s annual revenue due to its cancellation the following year. As a result, they launched an appeal for donors in September 2020, which has largely kept the company afloat so far and ensured that no staff were made redundant.
Despite the cancellation of the 2021 edition of Burning Man earlier this year, more than 10,000 people still made it to the festival’s usual base in Black Rock Desert, Nevada, for an unofficial event in September.
A Burning Man-based musical was also released to the public streaming last summer.