I have long been interested in the stories of artists, these narratives reveal the making of self and art and objects, a molding of experience, sometimes through the vagaries of fog or the rush of fire. Such conversations are rich in ideas, intimacy and beauty, from quiet moments to ecstatic sharing of vision, joy and even struggles and pain. These moments are a gift for any curator.
It is with great delight that I share the most recent memoir and art book featuring the life and practice of American artist Will Roger. It was a honor to be invited to write about Will’s work and life, one of many projects with this pioneering creative and early co-founder of Burning Man. This is the second book by the author and inside we discover how his life story shaped Will’s beliefs and practices for living in balance with the Earth and each other. Described as “one-part memoir and one-part how-to guide for cultivating resilience and action through creative and spiritual practices”
Will’s photographs reveal a certain affection and cautious admiration for the arid landscape and environs, as well as a reverence for the spiritual symbolism of this place, a continuation of the heroic tradition of Romantic landscape painting, wherein the sublime and an affinity for the considerable grandeur of American landscape come together in a display of poetics.
Contributing art historian, photographer and author, Fred Sigman notes: “Handbook For A Burning Age is about igniting a fire within us all. Like fire, it is also about illuminating the darkness of a world shaped by a dominant culture that has blinded us to life’s possibilities and even its purpose. Before we can change or reverse our planet’s deteriorating climate, we must first change the climate within our souls.”