Bio: Kelsey Simmen grew up on a farm in a small town in Northern California make-believing and walking around in nature, crafting mud pies and coffee out of plant life. She creates beautiful jewelry using silver and found, cast, fabricated or recycled objects gathered from nature and her experiences with Type 1 Diabetes. Kelsey applies several techniques to treat metal, most of which she learned from her studies at the Academy Of Art University, in San Francisco.
Macchiarini Creative Design
We've returned safetly from the desert, once again! This year's burning man was really different for us, with a handful of new team members and two pregnant ladies on crew- (yes, we took Fertility 2.0 seriously) this one-of-the-hottest years in the desert presented great challenges amidst the breathtaking sunsets and enchanting fire dancers atop our lady dragon. Check out this amazing picture gifted to us by a fellow burner! Describing what happens at Burning Man is a little like trying to describe one's relationship to something that is both terrifying and beautiful. Putting your verbal finger on an experience that is so full of circumstance, chance meetings, personal insights, transformations and interpersonal dynamics, that are fuelled by challenging environmental conditions and collective styles of living- the stories we can recount and the words we can offer seem to somehow dilute it all- the wonder, pain, pleasure and grace, the beauty, joy, clarity and craziness. It can be both challenging and rewarding, action packed and quietly reflective, and so many other things as well.
So this year, we offer you a brief report in pictures, and will add the stories of some of our crew as they are offered.
Let us know what your experience was and what it seems like is happening in our pictures! Then check back in soon, for our upcoming programming in the gallery for Fall.
Here's a shot of the dusty dragon and some of our 2012 crew:
This year's coin:
One of our very favortive events of the week: Workshop with the Black Rock Scouts- they're making their very own coins!
Have you liked our Dragon Smelter Facebook page?
Macchiarini Creative Design and The Metal Arts Guild Proudly Present: Homage to Ancestors - A juried/invitational exhibition of contemporary wearable metal art pieces and sculpture, where artists have re-imagined the work of artists who have passed, in homage and dedication to the practices which inform their own.Read More
In 2010, six team members from the our shop refurbished the Dragon Smelter from the inside out. With an unmentionably long list of upgrades including her new lights, claws, and head constructed from a salvaged oil barrel with saw blades for eyelashes, the smelter team took our lady Dragon to the playa so she could breath her fire into desert nights, at Burning Man 2010, Metropolis.
We worked in the sun and the dust with the crowds, to explore and redefine notions of value. We poured large relief sculpture coins from recycled aluminum cans at multiple live casting events, while miniature versions of the coin were smelted by participants with our supervision and assistance, and given away and at our sideshow, a travelling minting pour and press!
This year, we've been invited back as artists for Burning Man 2011: Rite of Passage! Emma has designed a brand new coin, sculpted in collaboration with Dan. Here's the sculpture in preparation to be molded!
Inspiration came from this:
"An oriental symbol of the soul's pilgrimage through life: the souls climb up the four belts of the world, or elements, to its purification, win through from darkness to light."
This year we're expanding and improving and are really looking forward to what adventures the playa and our dragon will bring! If you're interested in joining our team or know someone who might be, please contact us for more information!