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The Cradle of MIR at Burning Man 2013, Russian Team's video poster
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The Cradle of "Mir" is a 36 feet tall pyramid housing a 1:3 scale model of the space station "Mir". Help us bring it to the Playa! Read more

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This project was successfully funded on July 26, 2013.

The Cradle of "Mir" is a 36 feet tall pyramid housing a 1:3 scale model of the space station "Mir". Help us bring it to the Playa!

About this project

The Cradle of Mir is a massive art installation by a group of artists from Russia for Burning Man 2013. It is a giant pyramid with a wooden model of the Soviet space station inside. It looks like a temple that has been built by aborigines of Melanesia. 

Who we are:

We are "Pustye Holmi" (translated literally as Empty Hills) - a team of artists, engineers and producers involved in organizing a Russian festival of art, music and endless creativity that goes by the same name. In 2008, about 45,000 people attended the festival. It is based on the same principles of radical self-expression and environmental sustainability that Burning Man is based on.

We believe that one can travel to Black Rock City as a tourist just for the night when Man burns, have a couple of drinks and get back home without even tasting the dust OR becoming a citizen, being a part of the movement, spending a whole week with burners, volunteering for art projects or any of the core camps. Although most of us have never been to Burning Man before, we decided to contribute our efforts, money and love to the community, which we believe makes our world a better place. And we hope that you will do the same.

Why are we doing this? 

The sculpture raises an important question: "Have humans ever created anything that would matter to living beings from other planets, to the Universe or even to planet Earth?" We believe that people can come together, eliminate borders and visas and live happily if only they come up with an idea to build something so great that it affects every person on the planet. What could it be? Sending a space mission to the nearest star or stopping climate change? We urge the audience to think about past creations which we may be proud of as human beings! 

Space Station Mir 

We believe that the Mir space station was an amazing example of human cooperation and friendship. Mir was launched in 1986 and orbited the Earth for 15 years. The station has been visited by astronauts from 12 different nations until 2001, when it was sunk in the Pacific Ocean, near Fiji. The Russian government decided to abandon the space mission, citing a lack of funding. Mir became a prototype for the International Space Station (ISS).

For us, Russians who were born in the 70s and 80s, thinking of Mir always evokes a feelings of nostalgia for the good old days when space pioneers were driven only by the passion to explore and not by money or power. If people from all over the globe were able to create something so great on a small neutral territory in Earth’s low orbit before, maybe we can again unite to create something great that matters to all of us. "Mir" (Мир) is a Russian word meaning both "peace" and "world". Therefore, the Russian language has an equation: "world = peace". 

For background on the space station, you can watch a 20-minute movie from NASA astronauts John E. Blaha and Shannon W. Lucid who spent about a year on Mir.

In 1997, IMAX filmed and released a movie called Mission to Mir.

The Installation 

The pyramid is 36 feet (11 meters) high, which will be higher than "The Man" this year.

It is a bit scary for people who have never been to Burning Man (most of us are the first time burners) to build such an enormous art object, but we believe our excitement will only help. The vertex of the pyramid is open, representing the idea that members of the cult who built it believe in Mir's resurrection. According to their legend, one day, it will fly through the opening into the sky.

We will offer everybody an opportunity to write a message that will be delivered to the station "Mir". The messages will be burned with the whole structure and its message will spread through the air. We also plan to play some tracks from the Voyager Golden Record.

Our camp The Cradle at Burning Man 2013

Our small camp will be located at Biggie Size & 5:15. Come visit us if you are on the Playa. Or even better - camp with us! We have a few backer options left just for that!

What are we kickstarting for?

We won a Burning Man art grant. However, it covers only the cost of material (wood, plywood, etc.). We are asking for your support in buying tools, renting two workshops and transporting the installation from the workshops to Black Rock City. We will send you some memorable gifts for your donation:

Check out our handcrafted clay mug, we got only 20 of them!

Like our facebook page and follow on twitter to keep updated on our news!

Risks and challenges

We are excited to bring our first project to the Playa! Although we have extensive building and camping experience, we are coming from the "other end of the world" and we cannot bring our favorite tools with us - try to explain a TSA officer why you have that chain saw with you :-) We are spending a fortune on the plane tickets (more than 20 of us are flying in), car rental, warehouse, tools, room and board.

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  • You selected
    Pledge $10 or more

    25 backers

    Our nifty sticker with the Cradle of Mir symbols and enigmatic messages in Russian! It would look fabulous on your desk, laptop or bumper and it will remind you that we are all made of stars!

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  • You selected
    Pledge $12 or more

    15 backers

    Donate $12 and we will send you a great postcard from Burning Man! You can customize you message and we can write your message in Russian if you choose it!

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    17 backers

    Everybody loves fridges! Your fridge will definitely be glad to have a magnet on which the orbital space station is depicted. You might fancy buying a new fridge for this particular magnet! =)

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  • You selected
    Pledge $15 or more

    21 backers

    These are not just stickers! These are special Cradle of Mir reflective stickers for your bike or backpack to keep you safe and visible!

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  • You selected
    Pledge $17 or more

    6 backers

    For a $17 donation we will send you a custom signed postcard from Russia with warm wishes personally for you! You can also ask us to send it to your friend with your message in English or Russian signed by the crew!

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  • You selected
    Pledge $25 or more

    32 backers Limited (68 left of 100)

    For a $25 donation we will send you an exclusive hand-made out of clay necklace charm with "МИР" (Russian for "peace" and "world") engraved on it. Plus a Cradle of "Mir" sticker!

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  • You selected
    Pledge $30 or more

    7 backers

    If you are equipped with a Cradle of Mir bandana, you will be able to take no notice of dust, sandstorms and blazing sun. Wear it around your neck or head, cover your face or injured knee with it - and, who knows, maybe it will help you interact with the universe!

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  • You selected
    Pledge $35 or more

    11 backers Limited (9 left of 20)

    For a $35 donation we will send you an exclusive handcrafted clay mug brought by our team members from Russia. It has an organic and earthy feeling to it, perfect for a morning coffee. Surely you will get our sticker with it as well!

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  • You selected
    Pledge $40 or more

    12 backers

    This kit will let you feel the power of our intentions =) We will gift you with a unique bandana with a print of the Cradle of Mir, a magnet and a sticker will be a memento of our awesome project!

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  • You selected
    Pledge $50 or more

    12 backers

    For a generous donation of $50 we will gift you a custom Mir station water bottle, an essential item to have in a desert! And of course a sticker!

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  • You selected
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    4 backers

    A spyglass is something in between a telescope and binoculars. It will help you make observations of not only ground facilities, but also...

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  • You selected
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    9 backers

    A T-shirt with a print of the Mir space station. You definitely need one! It is a great memento of our project, Cradle of Mir. You will not find such an item anywhere else. Plus a sticker!

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  • You selected
    Pledge $80 or more

    2 backers

    This is the kit for a real burner! Custom water bottle, reflective stickers that will make you shine in the light of projectors and headlights of art cars driving by and a post card from the Playa!

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  • You selected
    Pledge $100 or more

    11 backers

    Warm and comfortable hoodie with a logo of Mir station on the front side. Wear it with pride for achievements of humanity! Also for this generous donation we will send you two postcards, one from Russia and one from the Playa! Plus a sticker!

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  • You selected
    Pledge $350 or more

    2 backers

    This jumbo gift-basket contains all the cool stuff: our custom hoodie and T-shirt with the Cradle of Mir patterns, a water bottle, bandana and a reflective sticker! You will help us to complete our project and we will send you our most favorite gifts plus two postcards, one from the Playa, and the other one from Russia with love!

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  • You selected
    Pledge $500 or more

    3 backers All gone!

    Camp with us at Burning Man! Our comfy art support camp will have the feel of the Cradle of Mir. We will share our joy with you, not to mention food and water! Welcome!
    **Burning Man ticket is not included!

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  • You selected
    Pledge $500 or more

    6 backers All gone!

    Camp with us at Burning Man! Our comfy art support camp located at Biggie Size & 5:15 will have the feel of the Cradle of Mir. We will share our joy with you, not to mention food and water! Welcome! **Burning Man ticket is not included!

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    Pledge $567 or more

    0 backers Limited (4 left of 4)

    An authentic and detailed 1:100 miniature copy of the “Mir” space station handcrafted by our team from the same materials that we are going to use for our project!

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  • You selected
    Pledge $3,141 or more

    0 backers Limited (5 left of 5)

    An unforgettable trip to Russia!
    This is a high-end couch-surfing experience ever - come and spend a week or two with our team in Russia (a round-trip ticket from LA or NY to Moscow is INCLUDED!). You will get to know Russia that tourists don't see! We will take you to our most favorite locations, cafes, museums and art galleries - you name it. We'll walk down the old streets of Moscow to beautiful parks and riverbanks. And then we will take you to a Russian festival of music and arts! Unlike Burning Man, our festivals are held in the woods, at riverbanks or lakesides, swimming and dancing is encouraged!
    *Unfortunately, we cannot guarantee that you obtain a Russian visa, but we will do our best to support you! Moreover this gift is fully transferable!

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Funding period

- (30 days)