(Image courtesy of Adelle Lin)
Two loud, bouncing, illuminated, steel unicorns named Loquacious and Lovely will be at the center of Burning Man this year.
The rideable pieces (basically adult-sized versions of these playground classics) are the work of a team of eight Brooklyn, Manhattan and Kingston, N.Y., friends led by Sophi Kravitz and Adelle Lin, who have started a Kickstarter campaign to help pay for the monumental shipping cost of transporting two big-ass unicorns to Nevada (and you thought non-Prime was bad) along with some extra LED and fiber-optic lighting to further trick out Loquacious and Lovely.
So far they’ve raised almost $3,000 of their $5,200 goal.
If you might presume the sheer joy of riding hand-made glowing metal unicorns at night in the desert with 70,000 friends would be enough, you wouldn’t be wrong, but Lin and Kravitz had more in mind. Both ‘corns come with speakers connected to a megaphone and console nearby.
“You could sit on the unicorn and I could talk into a megaphone and my voice would come out of the unicorn,” Kravitz explained. “We’ve also scheduled a DJ who will play music out of the unicorn, and we expect there will be more DJs.”
But the spectacle of the pieces is a means to an end rather than an end itself, the team says.
Kravitz and Lin both described their hope that putting people in a surreal environment leads to a breaking down of the barriers that prevent people from talking, and leads to real human interaction.
“I am hoping that people will let their imaginations fly and have ridiculous conversations with each other,” Lin said. “I like to think of the urban fabric as a canvas for creating unusual interactions.”
A good amount of Kravitz’s prior work has been toward the same end.
“I like when people interact with the artwork but also make friends with each other or fall in love,” she said. “I’ve seen that happen once. Art that you’re actually bouncing on or interacting with in some way does seem to break down barriers in some way and allow people to more easily talk to each other.”
The project is being constructed in a workshop upstate in Kingston, N.Y., but both women have deep ties to Brooklyn and met through mutual friends in NYC Resistor, a Brooklyn hacker collective. The building costs are being paid for from a Burning Man Honorarium grant, and the duo plans to have the pieces shipped in early August. Burning Man runs from Aug. 30 to Sept. 7 in the Black Rock Desert of Nevada.