burning man is continuing to prepare for its summer festival despite many other large-scale events being cancelled or postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic. in a statement released on 20 march, burning man maintained that it will proceed ‘thoughtfully and mindfully’ as it still aims to hold the annual festival from august 30 to september 7 in nevada.

burning man pavilion gathers participants beneath framed views of the nevada desert sky

this image by by matt cyrankiewicz demonstrates the usual setup at burning man, that invites festival-goers to sleep in the desert in tents and other structures.



‘in the current climate of uncertainty it is simply too soon to tell,’ the event’s organizers said. ‘there are some indications that the virus may peak in the next couple of months and then begin to subside, while others believe the pandemic could have a much longer timeline. so much is beyond our powers to predict or control.’


‘we believe the responsible course is to proceed with caution and not make a premature decision one way or the other.’


‘we are taking this situation very seriously and taking proactive steps to ensure our staff and community are as safe as possible,’ the event continued. ‘we will continue to consider the facts and make thoughtful, informed decisions about next steps.’

burning man still preparing for 2020 festival despite coronavirus pandemic

burning man’s official temple has already been revealed. it features an eight-pointed star structure designed by colorado architect and artist renzo verbeck and artist sylvia adrienne lisse
image via verbeck design / cover image by andrew wyatt



whilst burning man’s terms and conditions state that tickets are non-refundable, the event organizers have assured those who have purchased a ticket that it was exploring ‘every possible option’:


‘issuing refunds would be challenging for our nonprofit organization, which supports year-round staff and programming, but we are aware of and sensitive to the difficult financial position so many members of our global community are in right now.’

burning man still preparing for 2020 festival despite coronavirus pandemic

image via verbeck design



the statement also outlined measures already taken regarding the recent outbreak in the US. it includes all three of burning man’s offices being closes with employees working remotely.


meanwhile, a majority of other large-scale events due to happen this summer have been rescheduled including tokyo’s summer olympics, which is now postponed until 2021. architecutre and design events including milan’s salone del mobile and the venice architecture biennale have also been postponed.