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quixotic_burn's Journal

The Quixotic Project
Posting Access:
All Members , Moderated
Our Project for 2006:

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The Shadow Chamber will be at the corner of 5:00 and Esplanade this year at Burning Man.

We're at MySpace too: http://www.myspace.com/burningwindmills

Here we will post the parties, fundraisers, progress and pictures as the Windmills progress and evolve. If you want to actually contribute to the project with sweat, talent or donations then think about joining the Quixotic yahoo group which is where all of the actual planning and organization for the project is coordinated.

Click here to join Quixotic

Click to join Quixotic

As for the project itself:

The Idea.

This concept was dreamed up by Chris Konkel and myself during the famously bad dust storm that hit the Burning Man Festival in the middle of the week last year (2004). All around us camps and art were blowing down. We had just gotten done pulling our camp back together and securing the camps of a couple people around us.

The destruction around us got us thinking towards doing some big art. Big art that we could destroy. We thought of catapults and ballistas. We thought how absurd it would be to build giant windmills in these conditions. We, of course, started talking about fire, and something we hadn’t seen before . . . lances on fire charging things. . .

Waite a minute. Lances, windmills, people going out to the bloody desert with huge dust storm and nothing around and trying to build a city. . . Don Quixote! Build absurd windmills in impossible conditions and charge them with lances, burn them down to nothing! Perfect! We laughed and expect the idea to fade because a billion ideas like that area created everyday at Burning Man.

But this one stuck around in the back of our heads and grew. . .

The Windmills

Each of these windmills will tower over the black rock desert and be designed to thrive in the 60mph dust storms. The outside of the towers will look ordinary and mundane (the final appearance of the windmills will be decided while completing the two prototype windmills this spring). The idea is to have them impressive structures on the playa, to have them look out of place for their setting, but not strange in and of themselves. On the inside of the windmills however will be depictions of the worst monsters that people make for themselves. Greed and lust, conformity and fear, science culture and religion, everything that tells you – no, you can’t do that. Those things in life that assault us on a daily basis, things that have the illusion of being an ordinary part or life but are in fact created by us and can be destroyed by us.

Another idea that is in development is when the wind the wind kicks up outlines of twisted faces in el-wire and LEDs will appear power by each of the windmills internal generators. These faces would only be seen at night and often through the haze of dust storms.

Outside of the windmills will be several structures. A podium with pens and markers and pieces of card secured against the wind. There will be a secure box where these cards can be deposited. There will also be two crates. One with scrap wood and the other empty. Here people can write, sketch and draw those things in their life that they create which most thwart them, scare them, and keep them back. At the night of the burn all of these flammable objects will be placed inside the windmill whose inside most closely matches the authors personal daemons.

On the night of the burn there will be a battle. Around the windmills monsters will attack warriors, and warriors monsters. Starting with slow stalking and creeping motions the battle will grow into a frenzy until the field clears. As the dust settles three sets of three knights will approach the windmills. Knights with armors, knights with masks, knights with sheet metal horses and all with 9’ foot flaming lances. In teams of three they will charge their windmills in a controlled frenzy slaying the creatures we all took so long to create and sending them to the sky as smoke.

~Eric Miller

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