A floral theme runs throughout Burning Man’s newly unveiled Temple, which will be the Black Rock Desert festival’s first physical temple in three years.
This year’s structure is designed by Ela Madej and Reed Finlay and has a distinctive spire which extends from the top of the building in the same way the upturned stem of a desert flower would. Madej drew on her Polish heritage for the Temple’s canopy, which echoes the patterns of traditional Polish lace.
Burners enter the structure – officially named Temple of the Heart – via four gateways, each marked out by a wooden rose. The influence of the natural world will also be felt in the central part of the space, where a Rose Altar will be covered in more wooden flowers created and donated by volunteers.
In Burning Man tradition, the structure – and all of the mementoes and photographs left in it by festival-goers – will be burned at the end of the event, which takes place from 27 August – 4 September 2023 in Nevada. Madej has plans to offset the impact of the burn by offsetting the building’s carbon footprint and planting trees for any non-reclaimed wood that’s used.