Thanks to Playa to Paseo, you don’t have to make the pilgrimage to Nevada’s Black Rock Desert to enjoy some of the massive art pieces erected during the annual festivities. The partnership between the City of San José Office of Cultural Affairs and Burning Man Project entails a “series of temporary, interactive projects [that] connect people with each other and with San José’s vibrant urban, technology-rich environment,” says Kerry Adams Hapner, the city’s director of cultural affairs. The initiative kicked off last year with Rob Jensen and Warren Trezevant’s light-art “Sonic Runway,” consisting of a corridor of arches lined with LEDs. “Ursa Mater” by Mr. and Mrs. Ferguson—a sculpture of a bear and two cubs covered in more than 200,000 pennies—and “Tara Mechani” by Dana Albany went up in March. According to Adams Hapner, the latter, which is still on view in San Jose, “had an incredible presence on the playa, and was one of the works that stood out for its grace, beauty and power.” A futuristic take on a female Buddhist goddess, the 15-foot-high piece—comprised of recycled parts as well as a custom chandelier that illuminates her heart—graces Plaza de César Chávez (194 South Market St.) through June 9. “The community has responded so positively, signaling that the work does indeed inspire and reflect our local creative culture,” says Adams Hapner. More installations, all of which aim to engage the public, will be slated through 2020.
Originally published in the June issue of Silicon Valley