Kiwiburn 2017 Temple

The Kiwiburn Temple 2017

I was fortunate this year to have my design for the Temple of Kiwiburn in early 2017 (the NZ verion of Burning Man).

This involved managing a crew of 11 volunteers, for two weeks, building the structure in the middle of a field, in preparation for the main festival event.

The 1,500 festival participants were then able to use the space to say their fairwells, writing on the walls, before the final ceremonial burning ceremony.

Some numbers:
  • 1,000 meters of NZ pine
  • 144 meters of bamboo (24 lengths, at 6 meters)
  • 150 recycled coffee sacks, for the roof
  • 750 meters of manilla rope
  • 500 meters of manilla string
  • 150 meters of LED lights (totalling 4,500 LEDs)

Some thanks:

In addition to the superb voluntary build team, often seen in the images below, I also want to say massive thanks to:

  • Paloma Gardens – For not only letting us take away for free, but also helping us carry and load around 60 lengths of structural bamboo, from their incredibly beautiful gardens, near Fordell, Whanganui.
  • Coffee Supreme – For letting us collect for free, over 150 coffee bags, from their Roastery in Wellington.
Some images:
Smoothing down the timber.
The temporary workshop, smoothing down the 1,000 meters of rough sawn timber, for the build.
teams in the workshop
Some of the build team, hard at preperation.
Finalising the roof mandala (to be positioned in the roof apex)
pillar support production
Production of the 48 pillar supports
Some of the build team hard at work
string art
The roof mandala, now with the geometric string art applied.
the build crew, seen from above
Half the build crew, as seen from above, just before raising the mandala
Securing the bamboo
Raising the mandala, and securing the 6 meter bamboo roof pole sections.
The temple roof (not yet raised), the workshop, and the tool tent.
Checking the apex is level.
Checking the roof apex is level, 5 meters up. As you can see, it is exactly!
Partial roof construction
The tripods to support raising the roof, in position. The roof covering (coffee sacks) being applied.
partial roof covering
The roof section partially covered.
The roof now half covered
The roof panels mostly complete
Only one roof panel left to attach
The roof raised.
The roof apex, now standing at 7.5 meters on the column supports, having survived the gale force winds.
The kiwiburn site.
How the temple site looks, in a field, in the base of a valley.
The temple nearly complete
The complete temple structure, with the final wall panels going on.
Kiwiburn Temple 2017
The complete Kiwiburn Temple, one of the first days of the festival
The temple and the clouds
Some incredible cloud patterns, above the festival site
The temple lit by LEDs
The temple by night, illumated by near 150meters of LED strips
Internal view of the LED lighting
The temple lighting, as seen from the inside
Viewing inside the temple, after many of the memories have been added.
Looking up
The view from the base of the inner spiral, looking straight up
Looking down at the inner spiral
Looking down on the inner spiral, just before the final burn.
The ceremonial burning of the temple structure
The ceremonial burning of the temple structure
Most of the burn remains
After most of the burn is complete, and 1,500 people looked on in silence for the whole hour.