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National Treasure is the DC areas Burning Man project to build a colorful, graffiti covered obelisk that will light up and shoot flames Read more

Washington, DC Sculpture
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This project was successfully funded on August 12, 2012.

National Treasure is the DC areas Burning Man project to build a colorful, graffiti covered obelisk that will light up and shoot flames

Washington, DC Sculpture
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About this project

Thank you for your interest in our National Treasure C.O.R.E. Project!

We are a group of artists based in the DC area who want to build a C.O.R.E. project at this year’s Burning Man.  Our vision is to build a colorful, artistic replica of the Washington Monument to join the C.O.R.E. (Circle of Regional Effigies) at Black Rock City.  Our structure will be covered in colorful graffiti. In the day it will shoot bubbles and at night it will light up and shoot flames.  Building a monument, however, is difficult and expensive, especially in the middle of the desert. Any and every donation is a huge help. Our project has received 501(c)(3) nonprofit status, so your donations will be tax deductible. Thank you for helping bring National Treasure to Burning Man!

National Treasure: What are we building?

The Washington Monument is among the most iconic structures in America.  It is a symbol of our unity as a nation and our American culture both past and present.  With this in mind, we thought, what better symbol is there to represent Washington D.C. at Burning Man than a structure that pays homage to this monument?  Just as Burner culture is a bright and lively reflection of American culture; our structure will be a bright and lively reflection of the monument. 

Our sculpture will be a 20ft tall obelisk with a framework of wood.  It will be covered in a thin fabric skin that will be decorated with colorful graffiti created by local artists and members of our community. We will have a bubble machine connected to the monument which will release bubbles during the day. At night a series of LEDs inside the monument will send colorful patterns across the desert landscape of Black Rock City. There will also be a fire cannon that will shoot flames out the top of National Treasure. 

The Washington Monument was completed in 1884. However, even in 1884 diversity was present in American culture. People from all over the world donated stones for the Washington Monument to be built, event Native Americans and the Pope! All of these building blocks are inside the monument as symbols of our collective culture. We want to know: What does our culture mean to you? We want National Treasure to represent many aspects of our complex modern culture.  We are collecting letters from all over the country (and hopefully the world) with people describing their view of our culture.  All of these letters and ideas will be placed within the sculpture much like the founding bricks of the Monument. On Thursday August 30th, all of the letters will burn inside our sculpture as our offering. Yes, as a dedication our culture, thoughts, feelings and ideas will be inside of our sculpture when it burns. The burning is a symbol of rebirth, honor and dedication.

Our Team: Who we are.

We are a group of artists, performers and adventurers from all over the country but centered in and around Washington DC. Our team is very varied and includes trained pyrotechnicians, art majors, techies, yogis, engineers, sales people, businessmen to name a few. We are excited to represent the District of Columbia and its heritage and we invite you to participate too!

Burning Man: Where we will build.

At Burning Man of course! Not familiar with Burning Man? It is an extraordinary phenomenon that is difficult to describe in a few words.  For one week a year, tens of thousands of individuals gather in the remote Black Rock desert in Nevada and build a temporary city that revolves around art, love and freedom.  Communities of artists from all over the nation and the world create amazing interactive structures. 

National Treasure has been selected to be one of this year’s C.O.R.E. structures (Circle of Regional Effigies) and we have received a partial grant from Burning Man to do so.  This is the first year a DC area project has been included in the CORE projects.  The Circle of Regional Effigies (CORE) is comprised of 34 wooden effigies created by Burning Man Regional groups from around the world. Guided by the Ten Principles, CORE teams work together throughout the Spring and Summer to create art that celebrates their Regional identities and showcases the collaborative artistic efforts of their community members. The CORE Project is a celebration of Burning Man's Regional Network and of the work that groups throughout the world are doing to nurture and support the Burning Man ethos as a global cultural movement. 24 of the effigies will be placed in a ring 600 feet around the base of the Man and there will be two circles of five effigies facing out towards Center Camp. All of the CORE projects will burn simultaneously at 9:00 pm on Thursday of the event. It is a fantastic convergence of art culture and celebration!

Getting there: How can you help?

Building an art project of this size and with these sorts of specifications is very challenging. We have to consider the extreme desert conditions, transportation of the building materials and equipment to this remote location, and the problems with maintenance in a place that has no electrical grid or any local stores in which to buy last minute supplies as needed.  With this in mind our goal is $14,000, half of which we are aiming to raise through this campaign.  All funds raised, regardless if we reach our goal, will go towards this project.  Contributors to the National Treasure Kickstarter can receive ‘kickbacks’ for their contribution. We hope you enjoy the unique artistic creations we have come up with to thank you for your contribution.

If you are unable to contribute you can help us out in several other ways:

  • Spread the word about this kickstarter! Share this with other people who may be able to contribute.
  • If you are going to Burning Man, we are putting together a list of volunteers to help out. Email Kelly, our Project lead at Info@nationaltreasureDC.org for more information.
  • We want to know: What does our culture mean to you? We want National Treasure to represent many aspects of our complex modern culture.  We are collecting letters from all over the country (and hopefully the world) with people describing their view of our culture.  All of these letters and ideas will be placed within the sculpture much like the founding bricks of the Monument. On Thursday August 30th, all of the letters will burn inside our sculpture as our offering. Yes, as a dedication our culture, thoughts, feelings and ideas will be inside of our sculpture when it burns. The burning is a symbol of rebirth, honor and dedication. Send letters to:

 National Treasure Project 

224 Asbury Rd

Pasadena, MD 21122

Or email Kelly our Project Lead at Info@nationaltreasureDC.org

 A big thank you to the talented band Telesma for donating the use of their song Amor Fati for our video!

Visit our website for more information: NationalTreasureDC.org

Thank you so much for everything!

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Rewards

  • You selected
    Pledge $5 or more

    3 backers

    You will receive our undying gratitude and sincere Thanks! Come up to the sculpture at Burning Man and we will give you a high five.

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  • You selected
    Pledge $10 or more

    13 backers

    Whether you can make it to Black Rock City or not, we will have a toast in your honor at Burning Man.

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  • You selected
    Pledge $25 or more

    14 backers

    We will give you a toast at Burning Man and you will receive a limited edition National Treasure sticker.

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  • You selected
    Pledge $50 or more

    7 backers

    You will receive a National Treasure sticker and we will send you a postcard from Black Rock City expressing our thanks.

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  • You selected
    Pledge $100 or more

    6 backers

    We will send you a photograph of National Treasure signed by our team and a postcard, and a sticker.

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  • You selected
    Pledge $150 or more

    0 backers Limited (20 left of 20)

    You will receive a sticker, a signed photograph and a vial filled with the ashes of National Treasure on a necklace.

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  • You selected
    Pledge $250 or more

    2 backers Limited (18 left of 20)

    For your generous donation we will make you a prayer flag from the fabric 'skin' of National Treasure. You also get a postcard, photo and a sticker.

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  • You selected
    Pledge $500 or more

    2 backers Limited (1 left of 3)

    A sticker, a postcard and a large photo of National Treasure framed in a hand crafted frame made by one of our talented team artists.You will also receive a thank you letter and a sticker.

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  • You selected
    Pledge $750 or more

    1 backer Limited (9 left of 10)

    You get a sticker, a postcard, a signed photograph and a limited edition book with photos of National Treasure during construction and copies of the letters defining culture that will be burned with the monument. We will also send you a DVD of the making of and immolation of our project.

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $1,000 or more

    1 backer Limited (4 left of 5)

    "Dinner with the artists" To thank you for being such a wonderful philanthropist, the DC area artists will take you out to dinner! We will also give you a sticker, signed photograph and DVD.

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  • You selected
    Pledge $2,000 or more

    0 backers Limited (1 left of 1)

    The grand prize! To thank you for your generous donation, we will send you the metal "point" of National Treasure. You will also receive a postcard, sticker, DVD and one other kickback reward of your choice (depending on availability.)

    Estimated delivery:

Funding period

- (30 days)