If you are an Artist interested in Burning Art at Constellation, there are some things you should be aware of. Below is a list of materials that we have to prohibit from all fires at Constellation, as well as safety guidelines that we must require of you. Please be aware that if you do not follow these guidelines, you will not be able to burn your art.
Burnable art installations are to be placed by City Planning. More information on Art Placement: https://constellationburn.org/participate/art/art-placement/
Burnable art installations must be approved for burning onsite by the Fire Safety team. A Burn Plan is required and must be approved by both the Fire Safety team and the designated CATS representative.
Large scale burnable art installations are only allowed in designated areas. Space for large-scale burnable art installations is limited, outside of the Effigy & Temple. Small-scale burnable art is typically done as a “hot burn”, where it is added on top of one of the larger burning art pieces, such as the Effigy or Temple, after the primary flames have receded. Small-scale burnable art still requires approval from the Fire Safety team – DO NOT expect to put your art in the Effigy/Temple for it to burn or to be able to “hot burn” it without approval!
General dimensions for burnable art typically fit within a 12’x12′ area. You are able to extend up to 16′, with a preference to stay within a 12’x16′ area maximum. If small portions of your art stick out out the general 12’x16′ box, that should be fine. The maximum height for any burnable art piece is 16′.
A safety perimeter of one and a half times the height of the flame effect is required. Any towers or artwork that incorporates fire shall be secured from the wind and for safety.
If onsite conditions exist that make it unsafe or untenable to burn your art (e.g., too windy, torrential rain, drought or extremely dry conditions, etc), you will be expected to cleanup your art and remove it by 12pm (noon) on Monday.
- Any solid accelerant, pyrotechnics, fireworks (or device containing it) without previous approval Fire Safety team and CATS representative
- No magazines/newspapers/cardboard/paperboard/posterboard/phonebooks/etc.
- No synthetic fabrics (synthetics can throw off flakes of burning, melting ash)
- Only a minimal amount of natural fabrics may be used in any piece
- No glue-based wood materials such as micro density fiberboard MDF, melamine.
- No chipboard/particleboard
- No flame retardants
- No pressure-treated wood (beware the green tint- it may contain arsenic)
- No plastics/PVC
- Nothing classified as a hazardous material by the postal service
- No oxidizers without previous approval of the Fire Safety team
- Anything (other than small amounts of magnesium ribbon and/or legal burnplan approved fireworks) that results in a class D (burning metal) fire is prohibited
- No electrical components
- No color paper of any kind
- No pressure vessels (even empty ones); including spray paint cans, propane canisters, etc.
- No driftwood
- No gasoline
- No white gas
- No LNG (liquefied natural gas)
- No paint with a heavy metal pigment (red/yellow/black lead, cadmium, chrome etc)
- No more than a minimal amount of duct tape. It should only be used as a fastener. Paper based tape would be preferred.
**If you have questions, contact email@example.com**
Safety and Clean-Up Guidelines
Your piece needs to be in place on its burn pad and complete by 5pm on the day of your scheduled burn. Your piece gets fueled 30 minutes prior to your scheduled burn time. After your piece gets fueled, you need to have at least one member of the art team physically present to keep an eye on it (keep an eye out for smokers, folks spinning poi, etc). Presoaking logs with fuel can improve the lighting of your piece; if you’re not burning on a stack, consider presoaking a few. This needs to be covered explicitly in the Burn Plan.
Please use ferrous hardware (screws, nails, etc) that can be picked up with a magnetic sweeper. If you have an artistic need to use small, sharp, non-ferrous pieces (brass tacks or whatever), please alert the Fire Safety team and the designated CATS representative, as this will require additional clean-up.
As the artist, you must verify that your piece has been cleaned up prior to Monday at 12pm (noon). The Constellation Fire Safety team is not responsible for your piece being cleaned up, you are.
As a general rule of thumb, accelerants that are thicker than water (kero, diesel, lamp oil, tiki fuel, bio-diesel, paraffin, etc) are allowed, and most of the ones thinner than water (gasoline, white gas, coleman fuel, LNG, etc) are not. If you’re unsure, ask the Fire Safety team. As mentioned above, any kind of pressurized canister is not allowed. Remember, the goal is to burn wood, not accelerants, and with proper construction, you don’t need much accelerant.
Without prior approval, burning art pieces may not be used as elevated observation platforms or climbable art. They can present a safety hazard before they burn, and making them mechanically strong enough means using wood that’s thick enough to burn for a long, long time.
Do not transport firewood (including brush and driftwood) across state lines, due to concerns about transporting pests like the emerald ash borer. Constellation will provide the firewood necessary to burn your art piece, and we typically order enough wood for use throughout the event by attendees and to burn the Effigy & Temple. If you have a large burnable art piece that is not the Effigy or Temple and may require additional firewood, please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org at least TWO (2) months before the event.
If you have any additional questions about the Burning Art Guidelines, please contact email@example.com to be placed in contact with our Fire Safety team and designated CATS representative.