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July 13, 2008

Fire Arts Festival

After returning from a day of camping and hiking, we set off to Oakland for dinner and the Crucible's Fire Arts Festival. Fire performers, a steam punk tree house, and the pinball museum display were all interesting aspects of our evening, here's an overview of some of the best in show:

EXXOTHERMIA: Beetle-like ice-seeds burrow into a solid ice structure while propane bursts shoot out of the top. Basically, you're looking at the hugest vodka luge ever.

FLAMETHROWER SHOOTING GALLERY: Two bubble makers produce regular intervals of hydrogen, oxygen and propane bubbles while the public has a chance to explode, pop or simply ignite them with red hot rods. I just checked out maker Matisse Enzer's group Art Police, and it turns out they've worked with the Grateful Dead, Ken Kesey and Wavy Gravy for Berkeley City Council.

PYROCARDIUM: We stood in the center of a ring of fire torches while holding a stethoscope fashioned with a microscope to our necks. The flames synchronizes to our heartbeats. Literally and figuratively big-hearted, friend Morgan Crowe lit up the sky while testing the pyrocardium. I'm a little surprised cartoon vultures didn't start circling overhead when it was my turn. I had to run on the spot to get a pulse.

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