Where did this idea come from?
The Bureau of Unclaimed Secrets is the brainchild of John McKeown and Liz Molitor, with much love and respect to Julianne Swartz, creator of the amazing installation that inspired us to do this: Terrain, currently living at the Indianapolis Museum of Art. We felt that with a little work, the idea could translate into something amazing at the 2011 Burning Man event, which will take place in the Black Rock desert from August 29th - September 5th.

And...why are you doing this?
Our mission is to provide the citizens of Black Rock City with personal, thought provoking and interactive art which encourages them to rediscover and capture the secrets of their Rites of Passage.

So what will it look like?
Our installation will provide the Burning Man community with interactive art, classes, workshops and a chill space for socializing.We're aiming for 40-50 feet of space along the road or plaza, with two 10x20' shade structures 20' apart and a 20'x20' open area with a shade canopy overhead.  The shade structures will house our lounge area and art installation and the open area will serve as a space for our classes, workshops and general hanging out.  And it'll look PRETTY!

Yeah, but what are you going to do?
Several things:
  • In the spirit of our inspiration piece, we'll be recording whispered secrets on the Rites of Passage theme.  These will then be entered into our bank of secrets and will be played in our lounge area, giving participants shared experience in a meditative, chill space.
  • We'll also be collecting written secrets, which will be numbered and filed...we are bureaucrats after all!  Everyone submitting a written secret will be given a set of official tags: one for a keepsake, the other marked with the number of the submitted secret.  The numbered tag will give the bearer access to the corresponding secret throughout the week, and people will be encouraged to gift these tags as they see fit.  Imagine jotting down one of your deepest secrets and then gifting a total stranger the rights to read it...fun, inspiring and maybe a little scary!  :)
  • Besides secret collection, we'll be hosting yoga classes throughout the week, led by our resident 200-hour level registered yoga teacher.
  • And of course, anyone passing by will be welcome to relax and enjoy our space! 

Who are you guys?
Just a couple of non-hippie, geeky, yoga-loving vegetarians from Indiana, committed to the 10 Principles of Burning Man and hoping to create a camp that exemplifies those principles for others.