“The Water Project”

Mission Accomplished!! (updated 9/9/11)

Satelite image courtesy ~ GeoEye Satelite Imagery.

In 2011 The TriBe made history at Burning Man when the annual GeoEye Satelite made its regular flyby over Black Rock City near Gerlach Nevada. Utilizing three water tanker trucks, we spelled out the word “Tribe” (backward “e”) using water to darken the playa and define the lines over 1700′ across Black Rock City. Our art was over 700′ tall! In the final satelite picture, the word “TriBe” is clearly visible from SPACEnv over 4.5 miles above the earth.
We also invited participants to join us in the creation and execution of this HUGE project. After completing our mission, we all gathered together to create the “dot” over the “i” using humans, vehicles and water trucks as our color palette. Our art is now the single largest “VISIBLE” creation of art in Burning Mans history, which celebrates it’s 25th Anniversary in 2011. We’d like to thank the following people for making this massive art project possible.

Meco Water: Bill McKinnies and Crew

“Coyote”: at Burning Man. Thanks for allowing us to create our art!

Beth “Bettie June”: at Burning Man. Thanks for ALL your faith and support!

The Creators, Artists and Support on “The Water Project” were:

– Jim Bowers: Project Concept & Organizer
– Matt S: Artist & Lead Surveyor
– Bare and Charlie : Project Managers and Layout Team
– Ron at Meco Water: Contributing Artist. (“squiggly line”)
– (The Tanker Drivers): Meco Water
– Contributing Support: ElaineK, CharlesS, WayneD, DwayneB, ChrisF, GerryG, Doc, JerryH, PeterL, CarolinaP, WalkerB, RafaelS, ClaudioV, ThomA, SergioM, NiklassW, and The Tribe!

More Photos at http://www.burningtribe.com/gallery/waterproject


Bare said: “We didn’t do it alone that’s for sure. Charly’s handmade homemade plow made it easy to follow the path form survey mark to mark and several people helped Elaine and Charly and Charles Swenson and Wayne Domoe. There were about 8 of us that got it done, so thanks go to them as well and without Meeco onboard with the water, it wouldn’t be nearly as impressive even the one water truck driver Rod I think his name was, he suggested the “squiggly line” over the top that made the word pop. He was so excited when Jim told him to do it, he said to me it was the first time he got to create art on the playa. LOL it was cool and awesome how they helped make it happen, SO thanks to all, that was a fun project…. Wish we would have had time for one more pass over the “i” but the water guys were callin my water truck back so didn’t get to water it.. I KNEW it was gonna dry quick but we finished with 9mins left before the SAT took the shot….. Good Times….

(Notice our crew with the three water trucks parked in the dot of the “i”)

– Bare


Below is the original plan “sketch” (yes, the version below is the initial “sketch” PLAN photoshopped onto the 2010 Satelite photo) and it looks pretty darn close to the real (and final) layout :

Jim Bowers:

“Congratulations and Thanks to all those that participated on this monumental project. The TriBe has truly “left its mark” in Burning Man history. Special thanks goes out to Matt Schneider and Barbara McClean for the efforts all year long in helping to make this happen. Also gotta thank Bill McKinnies, owner of Meco Water for his trust and support on the project.

This is the first “artwork” in the 25 year history of Burning Man that a piece of artwork is CLEARLY visible from space (without zooming in on the satelite picture).

About Jim Bowers

Artist, photographer, entrepreneur.
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