American Institute of Architects, San Francisco Chapter

Black Rock City, NV: The Ephemeral Architecture of Burning Man (2 SDs)

AIA San Francisco
130 Sutter Street
Suite 600
San Francisco, CA
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$10 AIA Member | $15 General Admission

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Black Rock City is a unique urban experiment in the American landscape. For one week each year, 50,000 people deploy treasures of ingenuity to survive in style (or not) and leave no trace in one of the harshest environment of the USA. Home of the Burning Man festival, the artistic nature of the event calls for one-of-a-kind solutions mixed with open source creations and off-the-shelve gear.

From 1996 to 2010, photographer Philippe Glade documented more than 170 ephemeral dwellings, camps, structures of BRC. His book, Black Rock City, NV: The Ephemeral Architecture of Burning Man presents for the first time a comprehensive selection of those solutions.

Joining Philippe for this evening of beautiful images, anecdotal experiences, and robust conversation are Peter Dodge, FAIA and Janika McFeely, LEED AP of EHDD/Architecture, and Harley K. Dubois, Founding Board Member and City Manager of Burning Man.

Peter will discuss the physical context in which Burning Man at Black Rock City grows and disappears; including the main elements of the plan of the “city”, weather challenges, and the rules that help define the physical environment. Janika will remark on Burning Man culture and inspiration, radical self-reliance and sustainability, and Beyond BRC: burners in the world. Harley will be on hand to talk about her role as City Manager where she is responsible for developing the city plan.

There will be time for Q&A with the panelists. Copies of the book will be available for purchase.

About the Speakers

Philippe Glade: Born and raised in France, Philippe Glade came to the Bay Area in 1992 to improve his skills in English, a requirement in his job of fundraiser for a non-profit helping the education of women in India. Captivated by the Californian way of life and its diverse culture, he decided to make San Francisco his home. Soon his floral photography caught the eyes of publishers which led to publications with Chronicle Books, Sunset Magazine, Nouvelles Images, Examiner Magazine…His interest in architectural photography grew with his participation at the Burning Man where since 96 he documents the solutions brought into play to live in extreme conditions. His body of work came to fruition with his new book Black Rock City, NV: The Ephemeral Architecture of Burning Man.

Peter Dodge, FAIA: A founding partner of the distinguished and award-winning firm of Esherick Homsey Dodge and Davis(aka EHDD / Architecture), Peter H. Dodge, FAIA is a frontrunner of the Bay Area Regional style. Among his credits are The Cannery, various projects at Mills College, R.A.B. Motors and Autobahn Motors, and numerous residential structures around the Bay. 2008 recipient of the CCAIA Lifetime Achievement Award and 2010 recipient of the UC Berkeley Distinguished Alumni Award, Dodge continues to be recognized for his nearly 6 decades of service and contribution to Architecture.

Such a distinguished professional may seem an unlikely Burner, but Peter Dodge has been participating at Burning Man for the past decade.

Janika McFeely, LEED AP: In addition to being a six-time burner, Janika brings to EHDD an extensive research background in sustainable design issues in addition to her architectural qualifications. Since joining the firm in 2007, Janika has directed the LEED certification process for all office projects, which include a wide range of building typologies from exhibit-related and educational facilities to civic and commercial environments. Janika most recently participated in the design of the new Zero Energy office building for the Packard Foundation in Los Altos, CA, which is seeking a LEED® Platinum certification as well as the Lands End Lookout in San Francisco, CA, which is pursuing LEED® Gold.

Harley K Dubois: As a founding member of the Burning Man board, Harley K. Dubois has been integral to the development of the Burning Man organization and the culture of Black Rock City. She brings to bear two decades of project management, art and city planning experience since first joining the organization in 1991. In her role as City Manager of Black Rock City, Harley oversees both the Playa Safety Council and Community Services department, and develops the city plan to ensure that the citizens of BRC are happy and safe, from ingress to egress, and during life on playa. She originated theme camp placement, the Greeters, Playa Info, Burning Man Information Radio, and kindled the development of all other Community Service teams. Harley also created and maintains a comprehensive training and self-development program for the Burning Man staff, fostering the concepts of volunteerism, leadership and cross-departmental communication.

A portion of the proceeds from this event will be donated to the Black Rock Arts Foundation.