Built as a gift for California, a sculpture of transcendence made from the ruins of the 2018 fires. As a visual metaphor to transcendence, our team is building a monument out of the ruins from the fire and is bringing it to another place of deep personal transformation: Burning Man. After the Burn, the sculpture will be publicly installed in California. The wings span 80 ft. across , and are built out of recycled metal, iridescent panels and thousands of LED lights.
The Wing Portal
This past fall our community here in California was hit by the devastating fires that destroyed hundreds of homes and affected so many lives. These events have deeply changed us.
As a visual metaphor to transcendence and metamorphosis, our team is building a sculpture out of the ruins from the fire and is bringing it to another place of deep personal transformation: Burning Man. And after the Burn, the sculpture will be publicly installed in California.
The wings span 60 feet across , and are built out of recycled metal, iridescent dichroic acrylic panels and thousands of LED lights.
Our team includes electrical engineers, structural engineers, 3d designers, and sculptors.
All of us are long-time Burners, and Californians, so this is a very personal piece for us.
SUKI SOMERSALL - ARTIST
Suki studied art and design at Brown University and the Rhode Island School of Design. Her 3D design company KiraKira3D helps kids learn about mechanical engineering. She lost her home and art studio in the 2018 fires igniting the decision to create WingPortal.
SVEN EBERWEIN - LEAD DESIGNER
Sven is a multidisciplinary Designer currently living & working in Los Angeles, California.
He’s a member of the Tesla design team / Digital Sculptor / Creator.
Living around the world, at home in 3D Spaces.
STEPHEN RODAN - STRUCTURAL ENGINEER
Stephen Rodan graduated MIT in 2016 with a degree in Mechanical and Nuclear Physics. He spent two years as a NASA-JPL engineer working on earth-based orbiting satellites. Rodan has contributed to Burning Man art projects such as Wings Portal in 2019 and the Big Imagination 747 airplane in 2018 and 2019. Rodan is now an engineering consultant and president of Beyond Coral Foundation, a US- based not-for-profit 501(c)(3) focused on small-scale popup laboratories, coral farming, cave exploration, citizen science, and eco-tourism programs.
Samantha Emley - SUSTAINABILITY
Samantha is a multi-faceted creative and environmentalist. Her passion for sustainability sparked during her time as an early employee at luxury good start-up The RealReal, where she learned the value of the circular economy. She now spends her time instilling large corporations with the ethos of sustainability. Samantha sits on the sustainability and communications team at Mattel. Samantha empowers teams through education that inspires mindfulness around our personal consumption behaviors and use of recycled and sustainable products.
GLENN FISCHER - MASTER CREATIVE WELDER
Glenn is a master creative welder, who has expanded and grown his craft over 30+ years. The Phoenix is Glenn's sixth monumental size sculptural art installation to date. Given the name 'Smiler' because he is always lighting up anywhere he goes, with his infectious smile. Look up 'The Orb' from burning man 2018 for a taste of what Glenn can do. If it is made out of steel and mylar, and you can dream it; Glenn can build it.
Jake Lampack - LED Artist
Jake is the Senior Design Lead at Symmetry Labs and had contributed his expertise with dynamic LED art to numerous projects including the Tree of Teneré and 747. He suffered a house fire at his family home in which his father died.
Jonathan Clark - Technical Advisor
A fearless loving person with an incredible innovative mindset. He founded Innerscene to create virtual portals that look and feel like ultra realistic windows and skylights to light up people's lives with . Jonathan has over two decades of entrepreneurship experience and has previously developed video games, enterprise software, and electric surfboards on wheels (Burner Boards) for burning man. He loves his wife Samia R and they help each other on all their projects. Jonathan is a co-founder of NPO United Love Foundation.
John BRISCELLA - CREATIVE DIRECTOR
John Briscella is an international conceptual artist / designer. Masters in Science, Art, Industrial Design up to Urban Planning. Leveraging art, experimentation and innovation as a larger goal of developing industry standards in optimized forms.
Alexandra Duisberg - SOCIAL IMPACT
Alexandra is a doctor and medical volunteer passionate about helping others and the environment. Her education at Berkeley, Columbia, London School of Economics and Penn Medical School have all led her to the desire to help others lead fulfilling and healthy lives. Alexandra is an ambassador for Wing Portal reaching people around the world to raise awareness for communities affected by environmental disasters.
Cameron Colby Thomson - Designer, Technologist
Colby is the Chairman at Symmetry Labs, maker of large scale public art, a founder at Burning Man camp Astral Outpost, and a board member at Open Source Ecology, an open source compendium of creative industrial and ecological tools. In college he suffered a house fire in which he lost all of his possessions and creative works.
Samia R - Senior Advisor
A spiritual dreamer, an adventurer and philanthropist with a strong mindset of global collaboration for achieving humanitarian, economic and social justice for all. Founder of NPO United Love Foundation, dedicated to create one big family that helps orphans and abandoned children achieve their dreams. She is futuristic thinker and innovator with a keen interest in technology. Samia is the Founder & CEO of Digital Origami, a source for accurate personal biometrics that help us keep track of our body, to improve our health, mind and wellness goals, a time machine application that enable us to replicate, create and track a 3D photorealistic virtual representation " Avatars" of ourselves. She loves working with her Husband in all their projects.
Where We Are & What's Next
We have already finalized the structural and electrical engineering for the piece, allocated recycled materials from the ruins, and have begun fabrication.
We need the your support to cover welding costs, LED infrastructure, and transportation to and from the Playa.
We are going big in size and if our goal is not met, we will scale the piece to a smaller size but still dramatic and beautiful.
With each donation level you will receive a piece of artwork from the artists on our team.