Thursday, December 15, 2011

The Raygun Gothic Rocketship Gets a Tune-Up

Following the Port of San Francisco's recent approval of a 1 year extension of the Rocketship installation at Pier 14, the Rocketship crew is planning a maintenance weekend, and would like to invite the public to come out and meet the crew, ask questions, and help make the Rocketship truly a part of the community.

Weather permitting, the Rocketship crew will be onsite this weekend, December 17th & 18th (as needed), from 10 AM till dark. Work will include a rebuild of the plinth, repair of the Rocket Stop audio system, and a general refresh of the installation.

Some of us from the Black Rock Arts Foundation will be stopping by and we hope you will too?

Monday, December 12, 2011

Introducing the Bay Lights Project

Artist's Rendering

We at the Black Rock Arts Foundation would like to tell you about a new, exciting project that's in the works, spearheaded by our very own Advisory Board Member Leo Villareal.

Greatly influenced by his first experiences at Burning Man, back in 1994, Leo has created an impressive body of work of large scale, immersive light sculptures. He continues to dazzle us (literally!) with his groundbreaking use of L.E.D. sequencing technology and pioneering methods of using light as an expressive medium. Check out his past projects. Be ready to be wowed!

Leo impresses us with each of his new endeavors, but this one is sure to outshine (literally!) all the others. We'd like to introduce you to his newest proposal: The Bay Lights.

The Bay Lights from Words Pictures Ideas on Vimeo.

The sculpture will be installed and illuminated over the course of the Bay Bridge’s 75th Anniversary. Similar to the ambitious lighting of the Eiffel Tower for its 100th anniversary, The Bay Lights will commemorate the Bay Bridge's 75th Diamond Anniversary at seven times the scale of the famous Parisian landmark. The installation will live for two years, providing a stunning fine arts experience for the entire Bay Area and its visitors. The 25,000 LED’s will stay in place through the opening of the new East Span in 2013.

Learn more about the project, and about how to support it, at and follow this project on facebook.

Thanks, Leo, for all your past support of BRAF and Burning Man, and for your artistic contributions to our culture!

Monday, December 05, 2011

More About The Bike Bridge

The Bike Bridge - Part 1 from ONE ANT RED on Vimeo.

The Bike Bridge is a monumental sculptural collaboration between artist Michael Christian and 12 young women from 7 different Oakland schools.

The Bike Bridge project is presented by The Black Rock Art Foundation in association with The Crucible.

Please help us finish and install this monumental sculpture in Oakland this spring! Donate to the Black Rock Arts Foundation today!

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Ecstasy's Departure

P1020615 by grace.tang2004
P1020615, a photo by grace.tang2004 on Flickr.

Ecstasy has left Patricia's Green in San Francisco. We are sorry to see her go! We will miss you Ecstasy, thanks for hanging out with us for such a long time!

Cardboardia - A Country Built Out of Cardboard

Tomorrow is the big day for us to receive your Letter of Intent to apply for a Black Rock Arts Foundation Grant for your off-playa project. We are looking forward to reading all of them.

We thought you might like to see what one of our prior grant recipients is up to. We found this video to be completely charming, and we hope you do too.

Cardboardia, a country built out of cardboard by Zoomin_UK

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

ARTumnal Gathering 2011 v1

Marian Goodell & Joe Olivier
Nicole Bloss, Katy Boynton, Sidney Erthal and Tomas McCabe
Julia Whitelaw & Laura Kimpton
Freddy Hahne, Jennifer Raiser & David Best

Sunday, November 20, 2011

The ARTumnal Gathering - A Word from our Chairman

At the ARTumnal Gathering Saturday night, where we were celebrating our tenth anniversary, the Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Black Rock Arts Foundation, Larry Harvey addressed the crowd about both the history and forward motion of BRAF.

More photos to come.

photo: George Post Photography

Friday, November 18, 2011

El Radio Fantastique at the ARTumnal Gathering this Saturday

El Radio Fantastique was inspired by a bizarre family tale of a sinister radio that possessed its listeners, bandleader Giovanni DiMorente approaches his music as if turning the dial, transmitting a vibrant spectrum of musical styles, lost in time, yet timeless. This eight-piece ensemble serves up a dizzying cocktail of beautiful darkness and achingly sublime melodies - called everything from junkyard hymns to cabaret grotesque to gypsy soul to New Orleans second line noir. Their tunes are guaranteed to set your soul flying while your heart breaks and your body shakes.

Come join us at the ARTumnal Gathering and enjoy El Radio Fantastique and a fabulous lineup of entertainers.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Seraphim Dance Theatre at the ARTumnal Gathering

Seraphim Dance Theatre is a new Music and Dance performance group, summoned from the collaborative ether, featuring a fresh blend of multidimensional visionary performance art, music and story telling. With precision choreography, dynamic visual art, and live symphonic soundscapes, Seraphim focuses on offering original and inspiring art that is the evocation
of revolution and the human spirit.

The Seraphim show features an all original live and electronic music score by David Block of The Human Experience, teaming up with Vocalist Amae Love who provides her insightful lyrics and melodies to a provide a fiercely soulful live performance. Together they weave psychedelic layers of melody and harmony with organic grooves to create a live electronic symphony brimming with human emotion.

We are looking forward to seeing this exciting new show at the ARTumnal Gathering this Saturday night and hope you will be there to see it with us.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Apply for a Grant from the Black Rock Arts Foundation

BRAF Grantees Across the Years

The deadline for applying for a grant from the Black Rock Arts Foundation is fast approaching...

Attention artists! In an effort to streamline our grant application process, the Black Rock Arts Foundation has initiated a new step to our application instructions. To apply for a grant from BRAF, you will now need to submit a Letter of Inquiry (LOI) before submitting a full proposal. If the grant committee feels your project is a potential fit for our grants, you will be invited to submit a full proposal.

This cuts down on the work involved for both you, the grant applicant, and for our grant review committee. You'll have the chance to give a succinct, one-page overview of your project, and to tell us why you think it's a good fit for BRAF's grants program.

Usually, at this time of year, we begin accepting online grant applications. Instead, we'll accept online LOI's at this time. Online LOI's are due December 1, 2011.

To see if your project qualifies for a BRAF grant, and to read our full grant timeline and application instructions, visit BRAF Grant Criteria .

Please contact Josie at BRAF with questions:

Saturday, November 05, 2011

The Nautilus visits the Raygun Gothic Rocketship

Untitled by AkeLeslie
Untitled, a photo by AkeLeslie on Flickr.

On Thursday Nov. 3 Sean Orlando and some of the crew from both the Nautilus and the Raygun Gothic Rocketship brought the Nautilus to the Rocketship and had a little party! Sean Orlando gave a talk in the afternoon at Landor and Associates, then they all piled in the sub and drove it down the Embarcadero to the Raygun Gothic Rocketship for a photo shoot/dance party! Fun! Thanks for the photos Ake Grunditz!

Friday, October 14, 2011

The 4th Kind

The 4th Kind by ProudPinoy
The 4th Kind, a photo by ProudPinoy on Flickr.

A new look at Bliss Dance. Thank you ProudPinoy for sharing your fabulous photo with us!

Saturday, October 08, 2011

Karen Cusolito's "Valiant Flowers", freshly installed

A photo from our own SFSlim of Karen's amazing Valiant Flowers on Market, in collaboration with the San Francisco Arts Commission.

Friday, September 30, 2011

Reno - Save the Date: More Spire of Fire on the Way

Spire of Fire will be lit up again Friday, Oct. 7 and Tuesday Oct. 11 and then on Sat. Oct. 29 for a HALLOWEEN EVENT by the Riverside Merchants Association! Dj's and Fire Spinners.

Not to be missed, these great FREE downtown events!

photo: Mark Hammon

Monday, September 26, 2011

Get Ready for the ARTumnal Gathering

Immerse youself in a realm rich in imagination, expression and inspiration! Be the art!

Saturday, November 19 at 6:00pm - November 20 at 2:30am

The Bently Reserve
400 Sansome Street
San Francisco, CA

BRAF presents our fifth annual: Artumnal Gathering

Feast of Imagination Dinner 6:30 pm
... Artumnal Celebration 9:30 pm

Join us at the magnificent Bently Reserve and enjoy fine fare, tempting libations, special treats, surprises, the best of company in their finest attire, original artwork by our favorite artists, auctions featuring one of a kind experiences and items, and abundant creativity!

Celebrate the creative spirit of our community! Enjoy captivating live performances and dance the night away in three elegant rooms of music and DJ's.

Join our community's artists, supporters, entertainers and other visionaries in celebration of a banner year for the Black Rock Arts Foundation. We'd love to see you!

Artumnal Ticket Packages:

Sponsor an Artist
$55 Main Event Sponsorship
$250 Dinner Sponsorship

Can't attend this year's event? Make this a truly inclusive event, and honor an artist by sponsoring their attendance. Purchase a 'Sponsor an Artist' ticket and we will donate it to an artist in need of a ticket.


The Artumnal Celebration
9:30 pm - Late

$35 online presale 1st tier, SOLD OUT.
$45 limited number 2nd tier. Buy now!
$55 3rd tier and at the door

Includes an evening of featured and roaming performances, DJs, dancing, raffle, silent auction, photography sale and surprises.

Feast of Imagination Dinner
6:00 pm - Late
$250 advance purchase only

Includes an individual seat (unreserved seating) for a sumptuous dinner, auction, performances, signature drinks, wine, dessert and entry to the Artumnal Celebration.

Table of Plenty: A Table for 8 at Feast of Imagination
6:00 - Late
$3000 advance purchase only

Includes a reserved table for eight guests for the Feast of Imagination dinner.

Table of Abundance: A Table for 8 at Feast of Imagination, with premium placement
6:00 pm - Late
$5000 advance purchase only

Includes a reserved table for eight guests for the Feast of Imagination, with premium seating placement in the banquet hall, premium wine selection and treats.

Table of Jubilation: A Table for 8 at Feast of Imagination, with premium placement
6:00 pm - Late

$10,000 advance purchase only

Includes a reserved table for eight guests for the Feast of Imagination, with premium seating placement in the banquet hall, premium wine selection and treats.


Thank you for supporting BRAF's mission to inspire art, community and civic participation worldwide!

Thanks to our sponsors:

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Bliss Dance

Bliss Dance by JDenault
Bliss Dance, a photo by JDenault on Flickr.

Bliss Dance dances toward you on this beautiful evening on Treasure Island.

Thanks JDenault

Going Places

Going Places by Brisan
Going Places, a photo by Brisan on Flickr.

A beautiful day in San Francisco to share the Raygun Gothic Rocketship.

Thanks to Brisan for the panorama shot!

Valiant Flowers

Valiant Flowers by tapbirds
Valiant Flowers, a photo by tapbirds on Flickr.

Facinating view of Valiant Flowers by Karen Cusolito. This piece was part of Market Street Blooms.

Thanks tapbirds for the great photo!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Party at Everywhere!

BRAF throws quite a party on the Playa! Hope you got to stop by and say Hi!
Rachel Carpenter and Nick Morgan from our Board of Directors
Nick Morgan and Joe Olivier, Joe is the Treasurer of the Board
Elba, Dolores Huerta and Brooke Oliver, BRAF attorney, enjoying the party

Maria Partridge and Affinity
The Partiers
More Partiers
JennyBird and Miss Kelly
Maia Anthea Marinelli, one of our 2011 grant recipients in front of a model of her Wind Playground
Crimson Rose, Board of Directors and Affinity
Tomas, our Executive Director, Rae Richman, BRAF Advisory Board Member and Syn enjoying themselves
Rod, Chris Brick and Josie having a little fun
Freddy Hahne, President of our Board of Directors
Eli Peterson works for BRAF and he looked extra special for the occasion
Moze, Barbarino and Joe, having a drink I suspect
Our ever generous supporters the Bentlys, Chris in on the Board of Directors

Monday, August 22, 2011

Come Visit Everywhere at Burning Man

Our 2010 Presence at Burning Man

For many of us in the BRAF community, Burning Man is more than an event. It's our organization's birthplace. It continues to be our source of inspiration -- an example of a society where art serves an intrinsic connective function for the community. We eagerly look forward to our stay on the playa as an opportunity to connect with our supporters, to inspire others to instigate interactive artworks in their hometown, and to educate about our mission and our projects.

If you'll be on the playa this year, please stop by and introduce yourself, and join us at one of our events! Once again, we've teamed up with the other Burning Man Affiliate Groups (Burners Without Borders, Black Rock Solar, The Regional Network and the new Burning Man Project) to create a unified presence on the playa that we call "Everywhere!"

Everywhere is housed under one large pavilion. Together, we'll host activities, art projects, events and gatherings (listed in the What Where When guide) all geared toward kindling ideas and generating momentum for off-playa, after-Burning Man outreach efforts.

The interior space of Everywhere resembles a large world map, with continents cut out of wood, set up at table height. With the assistance of our World Domination Team, guests will create miniature sculptural representations or flags to represent their off-playa projects and endeavors.
Visit us at Everywhere, at 6:30 and Esplanade, at the 2011 Burning Man event in Nevada!

And don't forget to stop by our Annual BRAF Playa Cocktail Party!Thursday, September 1, 2011
4:00 pm - 6:00 pm

We'd love to see you!

photo: James aka extramatic

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Mobule Needs You!

In the spirit of the revolutionary interactive art of Burning Man and BRAF, we invite YOU to come out to celebrate and pARTicipate in the Mobule experience! Get involved with this great BRAF grantee project and help make it happen! New York, Black Rock City, San Francisco and Los Angeles. You know you want to , so make it happen!

Mobule is a kinetic, multi-media, mobile, interactive street art performance that connects people from different cities.

Check out theses videos about Mobule on the project's website:

The artist, Ludale, needs 3 partners for each performance. It's really easy to help! All you do is:

- Invite people to participate in an interactive game (invite them to try on the 'space helmet' and control the Mobule. Who doesn't want to wear a space helmet?!?)
- Interview people
- Help video the interviews
- Help pack up the Mobule after the show

Here are the dates the Mobule needs help. All performances are 9:00 pm - 11:00 pm:

Monday, August 15th
Tuesday August 16th
Brooklyn Bridge park - New York.

Friday, August 19th
Pier 14, Near the Raygun Gothic Rocketship, by the Ferry building - San Francisco.

Saturday 20th, August 20th
Mission Delores Park - San Francisco.

August, 29th - September 4th
Center Camp - Black Rock City.

Friday, September 9th and Saturday 10th
Santa Monica Pier - Los Angeles.

Artist Ludale and the Mobule also need places to stay during their travels, and need a ride to and from Burning Man any day between 8/23 and 8/28!

Can you help? Email if you can!

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Loving the Raygun Gothic Rocketship!

The talented creators of the Raygun Gothic Rocketship, which is part of the Black Rock Arts Foundation Civic Arts Program, received this drawing the other day. The artist had been to San Francisco and fallen in love with the Rocketship and wanted to creator to have a copy, so we are sharing this graphite rendering with you. This is what the artist had to say!

Dear Raygun Gothic Rocket Creators,

I was unaware that this magnificent sculpture existed until I went to San Francisco last November. The Raygun is a fantasy come to life. My only regret is that it’s not a bit closer to where I live so I could visit it again and again. While there, I took several photos for my own enjoyment, but decided I had to draw a study in graphite (If I can’t have the real thing, then at least I can have a picture on my wall) which I wanted to share with you.

I am a printer by profession, but create works on paper in pencil and occasionaly sell a piece here and there.

Thank you for making a SF geek’s dream come to life. Please enjoy the drawing.

artist: Christiane Raymond

Monday, July 18, 2011

Fashion in Russia!

One of our 2009 Grantees, Cardboardia, in Moscow, put on a Haute Couture Fashion Show recently and it is delightful. It put a big smile on my face!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Valiant Flower

Picture 057 by arts.commission
Picture 057, a photo by arts.commission on Flickr.

A crowd gathers around Karen Cusolito's Valiant Flower on Market Street. It is part of Market Street Blooms. The Black Rock Arts Foundation collaborated with the San Francisco Arts Commission.

Kind of looks like a tour group. What do you think?

Thursday, July 07, 2011

Happy 4th of July from Bliss Dance

Bliss danced with her friends, and photographer Sidney Erthel on the 4th of July and we hope your holiday was just as beautiful. Sidney Erthal’s 2010 Burning Man photos

A treat showed up in our email box last week from Roy Two Thousand, who I met at the Bliss Dance Opening Ceremony on Treasure Island. He sent a time lapse video with his original music, of the Opening.

To read more about the Bliss Dance Opening Ceremony – Click Here

Monday, July 04, 2011

BRAF Represents at Desert Arts Preview

The Desert Arts Preview is Burning Man's very popular annual artist lecture series, where you are given a sneak preview of some of the many notable art projects in progress right now for Burning Man 2011. You hear directly from artists who are creating spectacular works of art, often in highly collaborative ways. Some have been doing work on the playa many years and will be sharing humorous war stories associated with creating art under extreme conditions.

Once again the Black Rock Arts Foundation was invited to speak. Tomas McCabe, our Executive Director spoke about both our Civic Arts Program and ScrapEden Program and Josie Schmike, our Program and Development Assistant, spoke about the Grants to Artists Program. I loved it and hope you did too.

Desert Arts Preview Webcast

photos: Patricia "Aishah" Rusich

Saturday, July 02, 2011

Spire of Fire Lights Up Downtown Reno

Fire and music create a gathering for hundreds of participants each Tuesday and Wednesday night in July as part of Artown. Over 1,000 people gathered at the corner of Sierra Street and Island Ave for the opening of the temporary interactive art installation and performance venue. Hundreds of adults and children have enjoyed the unique experience of controlling a pulsing tower of flame effects while DJ’s spin dance music for the performers and pubic alike.

Brought to Reno by the Black Rock Arts Foundation and exhibited at Burning Man in 2010, Spire of Fire, by artists Steve Atkins and Eric Smith, towers over 48 feet above the Riverwalk. The tower of pulsing flame effects will be the site of continued fire dance performances by Controlled Burn each Tuesday night at 8:30pm, with “Get Hooped” taking over Wednesdays with Velocity Movement and BoHo Hoops. All of the performances are free to the public with Tuesdays featuring a beer and wine garden provided by Wild River Grille.

“We believe the ongoing exhibition of Spire of Fire during Artown will ignite the community’s passions in many ways,” said Crimson Rose, Member Board of Directors, BRAF and Art Director for Burning Man. “By enhancing civic space through the temporary transformation of an empty lot into an inviting art space and establishing a creative gathering spot for Reno citizens, BRAF continues to bring the culture of Burning Man to downtown Reno for those who have never experienced the event in the desert.”

During Artown, fire dancers and spinners from Controlled Burn will entertain Tuesday evenings 8:30pm – 10:00pm.

Hula Hoopers from Velocity Movement and BoHo Hoops present “GET HOOPED” at Hoop Jams on Wednesday evenings from 7:00pm-8:30pm. All levels and ages are welcome.

Mark Hammon’s photos of the Spire of Fire Opening

Spire of Fire photos

Jim Freeman’s from “Downtown Reno” Photos

video: Freddy Hahne
photos: Mark Hammon