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We will send 200 solar powered lights to Sierra Leone after lighting a 1000 foot long tunnel for 7 nights at Burning man.
We will send 200 solar powered lights to Sierra Leone after lighting a 1000 foot long tunnel for 7 nights at Burning man.
129 backers pledged $6,028 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

Flutter Tunnel: Spreading Light Through Art project video thumbnail
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$6,028

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WHAT IS FLUTTER TUNNEL?

Flutter Tunnel is a quarter mile long sculpture, consisting of 100 arches, lit at night by solar powered flashlights. We created the first version of Flutter Tunnel for the annual Burning Man Festival in the Black Rock Desert of Nevada in 2009.

We are returning this summer to complete the project again. Our group of twelve friends consists of solar energy experts, installation and media artists, biotech research scientists and non-profit managers. We are as diverse as the general population of Burning Man.

For a bit more info visit www.fluttertunnel.org

WE HAVE ONE GOAL

Send 200 solar powered flashlights to Sierra Leone to distribute to rural school children. Flutter Tunnel is the impetus behind this idea. Our approach takes into account the temporary nature of art at Burning Man. After Flutter Tunnel is dismantled, all the steel is returned, while the lights are distributed to students who will truly benefit from them.

We hope to:

Fund Project --> Build --> Share --> Dismantle --> Spread Light

We have completed Flutter Tunnel once in 2009, and it worked great. In partnership with Books for Africa and Schools for Salone we shipped 200 solar flashlights to Maforeka, in Sierra Leone on a shipping container of books.

"Maforeka, SLMB Masanga and SDA Masanga received the solar lights. All sent their thanks and appreciation for the donation to promote the culture of reading by school pupils."

Students in Sierra Leone using lights from Flutter Tunnel
Students in Sierra Leone using lights from Flutter Tunnel
Flutter Tunnel lit by 200 solar powered flashlights
Flutter Tunnel lit by 200 solar powered flashlights

WHAT'S NEW THIS YEAR?

We have exciting plans for Flutter Tunnel. Imagine the entire tunnel moving in unison, fluttering back and forth. This will mimic the movement an oil pump makes as it see-saw's up and down. It should be quite spectacular.

Flutter Tunnel in motion
Flutter Tunnel in motion

THE REWARDS

The Sucker Steel rewards will be fabricated with the highest level of craft and attention to detail. We will have no shortage of sucker rods to upcycle into wonderful rewards, and encourage you to take the opportunity to stock up. Funds raised above and beyond our goal will be allocated to sending additional lights to Sierra Leone. International shipping isn't cheap, so let's make the most of our inclusion on a shipping container of books.

Sucker Steel rewards
Sucker Steel rewards


Sequin Scrap is the byproduct of manufacturing sequins (little shiny dots). This material comes on spools, is shiny, and quite fascinating. Cut into lengths and fastened with a rubber band, the sequin scrap turns into amazing bike bling. 

Sequin Streamers for bike handles
Sequin Streamers for bike handles

MATERIALS

Sucker rod is a technical term describing a steel rod with couplings on each end used in oil drilling. The material is decommissioned after a specified length of time due to wear on the rods as they rub against a sheathing pipe. A cross section of a worn our sucker rod will not be round, rather flattened on one side due to rubbing day in and day out as oil is pumped up for you!

After Burning Man, all the sucker rods are returned to a steel recycler, minus the rods used to fulfill the Kickstarter rewards.

Pump Jack
Pump Jack

Solar powered flashlights save people money presently spent on kerosene, reduce carbon emissions into the atmosphere, reduce carbon particulate inhalation and fire risk, aide in education, security, safety and dramatically improve people’s overall quality of life.

ART AT BURNING MAN

The artwork created for the annual Burning Man festival transcends art history, contemporary galleries and the vast majority of public sculpture. The artwork invites participants to play, generate roles and interact on levels that are not possible outside the boundaries of the temporary city of 50,000+ people. Historically, structures and sculptures were burned after their short lifespan, celebrating the impermanence of life and experiences.

Nexicon on the playa
Nexicon on the playa

Flutter Tunnel is inspired by the scale and boundless potential the playa holds for immense installations. We will most likely be on the tame and meditative side, as many works incorporate technical electronics and elaborate systems that push the boundaries of human potential and whimsy. Needless to say, our effort will be well received by the captive audience of art enthusiasts at Burning Man. 

THANKS TO

Scott Sady for the amazing banner photograph of Flutter Tunnel

Schools for Salone for a fruitful partnership

Books for Africa for the international shipping and logistics

Support this project

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    Anything and everything helps. We appreciate your generosity!

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    Sequin Scrap + Bike = SequiStreamers! Sequins are little shiny dots. The by-product of manufacturing them is a honeycomb glittery roll of material, disposed of in large quantities. We upcycle this into streamers for your bike. They are fantastic!

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    Pledge $30 or more About $30

    NEW REWARD: A set of 10 Flutter Tunnel postcards! Check out all the photos from 2009 on our website. You will receive a curated selection of the most gorgeous photographs documenting Flutter Tunnel from 2012 in all it's glory.

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    A playa footprint poem. Yes, the procedure here is to dunk one's foot in water, step on the playa, and step on a fine water color paper. Next, a little ditty will be inscribed into this fine piece of art. For you. And you only.

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    Pledge $35 or more About $35

    From Loving Hands: Individual Chakra Sachets! Each sachet will hold colored crystals & essential oils & a mantra matching the specific chakra. A sample of blessed playa from Black Rock Desert is nestled within the sachet.

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    Pledge $40 or more About $40

    From the Fire: A ceramic pint glass crafted by a talented Flutter Tunnel artisan. Check out the images in our description for reference of Hannah's work!

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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    You will be invited into an online narrative photo gallery documenting the project's process (starting now) all the way through the shipment of lights to Sierra Leone.

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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    Solar Light System: For this reward you will receive one solar panel and light, perfect for camping, emergencies and daily use. You will also be sending one complete lighting system to Sierra Leone! The panel can also charge your phone or iPod - Just imagine . . .

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    Pledge $60 or more About $60

    NEW REWARD: A 24" X 36" fine art photographic print of Flutter Tunnel. Dress up an old wall with some color from the playa. You will be invited to a gallery of images to choose from. They will be spectacular!

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    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    Sucker Steel + Glass = Magnifier. When was the last time you started a fire with a magnifying glass? This is your chance to obtain your very own handheld incindeary device, complete with a rustic sucker rod handle. Instructions included.

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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    Sucker Steel + Burger = Spatula! When was the last time you wielded a heavy metal spatula? Impress even the most seasoned chef with your superior spatula. It's strait out of the west, and ready for grillin.

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    Pledge $125 or more About $125

    Sucker Steel + Coals = Skewer Set! Impress your friends at your next camp fire with these five skewers. Slip on a marshmallow, mushroom or sausage and let the flames take care of the rest. Delicious and beautiful!

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    Pledge $150 or more About $150

    NEW REWARD: This reward embodies the expansive scale of the playa. It is a 50" x 120" fine art panoramic print of Flutter Tunnel. You will be invited to a gallery of impressive photography, showcasing Flutter Tunnel against various shades of color seen on the playa to select the perfect match for your abode.

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    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    Sucker Steel + Fire = Poker! For the most distinguished fire technician, a custom fire poker. Get those coals cooking and keep fidgeting with the fire for nights on end with this finely crafted piece of custom metal work. The details will not be spared. Trust us.

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    Pledge $700 or more About $700

    Sucker Steel + Fireplace = Tool Set! All fires must come to an end. For this occasion, the toolset comes in handy with a broom, shovel and poker for the lonesome log hanging out in the coals. Distinguished and refined, the design reflects those looking for a unique story to tell around a warm fire. A stand is included to showcase the toolset.

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Funding period

- (19 days)