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 Black Rock City BRAiNWASH

Black Rock City BRAiNWASH:
24 Hour Self-Serve Convert-o-mat, Burning Man 2003

BRAiNWASHBurning Man 2003's theme was Beyond Belief and I was traveling with a group calling itself the Skeptical Mystics. After creating an art installation in 2002 I knew that I wanted to create something new but didn't know what. While driving down SE Division St. in Portland, I saw an old salon hair dryer for sale on the sidewalk and immediately had a vision. The Black Rock City BRAiNWASH - 24 Hour Self-Serve Convert-o-mat was born in those precious seconds.

I gutted the hair dryer and wired it for light and sound. Splashy paint and faux fur finished it off. The light and sound were to be controlled by placing the dryer cone over your head. I installed speakers where your ears would be and filled the clear head cone with gold, sequenced electroluminescent wire. When the head cone was up, nothing. Sit and put the cone over your head and the brainwashing begins. The switch would also illuminate an animated head in a cage, 10' in front of you.

For the soundtrack, I spent hours recording Pat Robertson on the 700 Club. Once I found enough appropriate sound clips, I went to my friend's audio studio and we replaced all the references to God and Jesus with Larry and The Man. So now we have Pat Robertson telling you to follow Larry and worship The Man. I have to admit, the audio was a little rough, so we decided to add a maddening backtrack to finish things off.

The entire scene was placed within an animated 20' room, The Octagon, to await passers by who would be curious enough to sit in the chair and put the cone over their head.

Want to hear the soundtrack.. I don't recommend it. But if you do, grab some headphones and sit back.

Here it is. Black Rock City BRAiNWASH Soundtrack