Burning Man Projects 2009-2015

LensGameBoard 2015 Philosophy of Life Game

For 2015 I am creating a very simple card game for 2-4 players based on my deck of 54 questions for designing a robust philosophy of life (found at Q54Club.org). The cards are randomly placed on a board and covered up by flaps that hide their location. Players take turns revealing pairs of cards and they score a point if they match type and color. For example, the 3 of hearts matches the 3 of diamonds and the queen of spades matches the queen of clubs.

If you match a pair in your turn you get to pick another player who must answer the question. Click on the image to see a larger readable version.

As installed at Lucky Bar for Valentine’s Day 2017

2015 Love or Lust

A couple stand facing each other with one hand on a metal plate in the upper left and right corners of a board. They kiss or hold hands and a pair of circuit measures their body resistance.  One lights a column of lights labeled “LOVE” and the other is “LUST”.  If the entire column lights then a bell will ring (or if someone can help me, perhaps we can create a more pyrotechnic effect).


2011 Love Tester

When two people touched the board and then each other lights flashed and a buzzer buzzed.  Eventually a readout reported on the player’s supposed intellectual, emotional, and sexual compatibility.  This was in fact randomly generated by circuit that rolls a pair of electronic dice.


2010 Puzzle and Pun Playpen

In 2010, My college roommate, Andre, and my son, Davis, and I created an interactive project we called the Puzzle and Pun Playpen. It measured 8 feet by 12 feet, with a net about 2 feet high around the perimeter. It is filled with beach-balls printed with the globe of the world.


The game is played by two people lying flat on the floor facing away from each other with their feet touching. Both players examine photographs mounted on the floor. Next to each photograph is a metal tab and photographs are paired up to create visual puns. For example, at one end of the playpen might be a photograph of a sledge hammer. At the other end might be a photograph of MC Hammer. If the two players touch the two photographs and each other simultaneously then a light on the controller board will light that says “I got HAMMERED at Burning Man.” There were 12 puzzles in all and a timer let a game last 5 minutes at the most.

Lesson Learned: This was much more fun to make than to play… way too complicated, and no fun on a really hot day.

2009 Dust Masks

In 2009 my wife and I gave away about 300 masks during dust storms. We used a rubber stamp to print “CONTAINS SOUVENIR DUST FROM BURNING MAN”

These were not expensive (although hardware stores charge a few dollars for one of these masks you can buy them in quantity for very little. If you are going to join us on our trip to Burning Man then I strongly recommend this as a good first gift because they are very much appreciated and you get to meet lots of people.

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