THE BURNING MAN FESTIVAL AS A BENCHMARK
“CAN YOU SET UP A BURNING MAN FESTIVAL IN EUROPE FOR OUR 600 EMPLOYEES?”
The Burning Man Festival? Isn’t that the cult event with over 70,000 visitors that takes place every year in the desert of Nevada? And which culminates in the burning of a gigantic wooden sculpture?
What a benchmark! But who gets the chance to realize such an extraordinary event? This was definitely one of the most spectacular and exciting tasks for our agency.
BE A Mensch
A Swedish IT consulting company wanted to invite its employees to an extraordinary summit under the motto “be a mensch”. “Wellbeing” and “Self-Improvement” were to be the key points of the two-day program for the participants.
LOCATION RESEARCH IN COMPETITION WITH GAME OF THRONES
A seemingly endless area in the desert, in the middle of nowhere, seemed ideal for this project.
The only desert in Europe is located in the south of Spain and belongs to a then 80-year-old lady named Carmen. At the beginning of our location research, we had no idea that the area was actually already rented out as a backdrop for Game of Thrones.
When we assured Carmen, after sometimes bizarre negotiations, to employ virtually her whole village and family at the event, we had a deal!
Total WORK OF ART “BURNING HORSE”
A yoga session at sunrise with all 600 participants, running over glowing coals, meditation classes or sharpening the senses with blindfolded eyes were just some of the ambitious program points we were to realize in the middle of the desert.
Also, bicycles had to serve as means of transportation despite the deep sand, and crazy art installations such as mirrored figures, floating faces á la Salvatore Dali, as well as quotes and writings were integrated by us into the horizon. In the end, a multitude of smaller workshop stages with sun sails and a concert stage transformed the desert into a total work of art.
The most spectacular installation of the Burning Horse Festival was the over 6 meter high wooden horse, which our guys from the exhibition construction team had carpentered and which was on fire at the climax of the event.
Comida vegano español en el desierto de Tabernas
To literally cram everything necessary for a functioning kitchen and catering, packed into a 5mx5m tent on the sandy soil of the desert, was a real challenge even for our experienced rock’n’roll chef Markus and his team. The Spanish-vegan catering becoming a highlight, we owe not least to the energetic support of the housewives from the neighboring village and the deal with Carmen.
We like it rough – Making of
150 tons of material – tents, generators, water tanks, building materials and food – had to be transported to the desert, distributed and set up in 5 days to provide adequate infrastructure for the Summit participants.
The fact that our off-road forklift had 300 more operating hours on it´s speedometer after the event and some of the team had more than 200km on their pedometer are just some of the extreme numbers of this event.
In the end, we realized that we had involved entire families in our work without them noticing. The father helped as a plumber with the water supply, the mother pitched in in the kitchen tent and the adult children worked in the service.