Bjarke Ingels and Jakob Lange – The Orb, 2018, inflatable mirrored sphere, 32-metre inclined steel mast, approximately 100 feet (30 metres) in diameter. (one 500,000th the size of the earth’s surface), at Burning Man festival, Nevada desert 14
Photo: Laurian Ghinitoiu
In 2018, designers Jakob Lange and Bjarke Ingels embarked on a crowdfunding venture for their ORB, which was a giant reflective sphere that was to be erected at Burning Man. The ORB was an inflatable piece of art that was designed to represent the earth’s surface to scale. As such, with its diameter of approximately 30 meters, the ORB was one of the largest pieces of artworks at the increasingly popular festival. Conceived as a mirror for lovers of earth, the orb was created to reflect the sea of festival attendees and the growing desert community surrounding them.
THE ORB was created as a tribute to nature and to the human expression. The designers, Jacob and Bjarke designed it so that it could be spotted easily. The designers funded the majority of the structure and took over 2,500 hours to weld and sew the sphere in place. To complete the project, the designers turned to crowdfunding platforms to raise the additional money needed to bring it to life. The sphere was constructed from the same chromatic fabric that is used to create NASA weather balloons. It was held in place by a 105-foot-tall steel mast.
The architects and the designers intended the sphere to act as a landmark for future festival guests. Bjarke and Jacob planned the reflectiveness of the sphere for both practical and artistic reasons. The lights from the festival and the human life from the community would cast a luminous glow over the sphere in a manner that made it appear like a huge disco ball while to the outside world, the same sphere would serve as a landmark for future generations.
The burning man community is known for building a broad range of elaborate structures that follow a theme every year. The orb, which was installed in 2018, followed the theme of I Robot. This theme asked participants to respond to the alarming rise of technological power the effect of technology on the rest of the world.
Photographer Victor Habchy’s trip to Burning Man
Victor Habchy is a French photographer and director. He was lucky enough to get a ticket to Burning Man, an annual festival in the middle of the desert of Nevada’s Black Rock Desert in the US. He describes the event as life-changing, spending a full week without electricity, sleeping in a tent in desert heat and dealing with dust storms.
In the words of the photographer
I understood you can’t really get prepared to this simply because you just don’t know it. Then I figured out they were actually no preparation you should follow; all you need is to let it go.
Because never on my life have I experienced more love, more freedom and more self-expression. This place gathers everything that is left from the human dreams and utopia and how, by every individual means, we could work together to build up a better world.
You know what the very first message you hear when it’s you first time at the Burning Man?
The Pier Group – Embrace, 2014
Embrace by The Pier Group
The Pier Group, a collective of artists, engineers, and builders, came together and spent a budget of $265,000 in order to create Embrace, the 72-foot (22 meter) sculpture of two figures embracing, whose fleeting life would end up in flames at the Burning Man festival.