2017 Summer Workshop: Burning Man


Burning Man in Black Rock Desert, Nevada
NYC [design + fabrication]: Jun – Aug 21
LV [travel + rv]: Aug 22 – Aug 23
BLACK ROCK DESERT [assemble + festival]: Aug 23 – Sep 3
Research Question
The Extraction Laboratory is focused on extracting architecture from situations rather than places. With the desert as a canvas, and Burning Man as a context, the Laboratory team tests this directive through the development of a spatial roof with structural and material weight. The Laboratory continuously questions what it means for architecture to be situational: temporary, systematic, reproductive, interactive.
Methodology and Process

Modes of Operation:

  1. Structure
    develop a lightweight structural system suitable for the desert
    [ 2000 linear feat of structure as radiused 1-3/8” steel tubing + 2000 linear feet of cross bracing as 1/2” steel pipes ]

  2. Joints
    develop a system of joints/ connections that can be easily re-assembled in the desert
    [ the team developed 600 connections, with 5 connection types ]

  3. Materials
    test and prototype fabric panels to create a layered shade structure
    [ 4000 sf of fabric ]

  4. Construction
    build/ test structure at Northport, NY site
    disassemble / ship structure to Black Rock Desert [ pack all structural modules + supplies into 6000 cubic feet of shipping container ] assemble in Black Rock Desert disassemble in Black Rock Desert

Output and Findings

Site: 9:45 / Ceremony
The final output of the Workshop was the event.
The team erected the spatial roof at Burning Man 2017 and created the XTR Camp.
The students worked on three elements while in the desert:

  1. Documentation [feedback-loop]
  2. Habitation [The Camp]
  3. Installation [The Roof]