Dicky Box - "The Release" & Meanderings

Exchange camp ideas, find places to perform, announce your events, etc.

What are your feelings about the Dicky Box? On a Scale of 1-10, 1 being "Hated It. You kidding me?" and 10 being "Loved It. The Dickie Box was Amazing!".

1 - Hated It.
9
12%
2
4
5%
3
5
7%
4
2
3%
5
13
18%
6
3
4%
7
6
8%
8
6
8%
9
7
10%
10 - Loved It.
18
25%
 
Total votes : 73

Dicky Box - "The Release" & Meanderings

Postby butterscotch » Fri Sep 09, 2005 4:52 pm

I was there about 15 minutes before Dicky was released at Midnight on Sunday.

To set the stage: By that time the little piece of metal mesh that covered his "talking hole" was gone. There was maybe a good one-hundred-plus people surrounding his enclosure. Dicky paced to-and-fro in the center.

He seemed pretty ansy as the crowd screamed "ten minutes... five minutes... Someone wiggled the side with the talk-hole... which pressed some wood supports out... Dickie pressed them back in and continued to pace... and then there was a countdown from one minute... 59 seconds... Dicky went around pressing on each side of his enclosure and looking out at the audience gathered.

Release moment hit. Dicky pushed/pulled open the plastic side with the talk-hole. (This surprised me since during a brief earlier conversation with Dicky about his "release" time he said he had a hammer to get himself out)

There was a loud cheer... Dicky hugged several people involved with the project... A DWP vehicle made its way toward the front... and then Dicky stood on top of it with a bullhorn. (At this point there was 2 separate videocameras trained on him)

He talked briefly about how people had supported him and how art had won out this day. Then Dicky sped off with the vehicle to spend some time "alone".

As this was going on one woman repeated: "Dickie can we burn the box?"

With that I'd say about 75% of the crowd dispersed (it was like watching the end of the Truman Show)

I stuck around and listened to one of this friends/co-conspirators answer questions about the box (and at the same time protect it and its contents from being damaged/removed/destroyed). It is going to be displayed at the San Francisco Decompression to allow people to feel what it was like to be in "the box". There is also a website:
www.thedickybox.com/
He also mentioned that a girl had made it into the enclosure via a separate sliding opening (not the one up front) used to get food to Dicky... and that Dicky had caught it all on tape.

Dicky returned about ten minutes later with the words,
"Where did everyone go?"

By that time a Bluegrass Band had showed up... Dicky: "I love these guys" and began to play. It seemed at that point the attention had shifted away from Dicky.

I wandered off about fifteen minutes after that...

For me the finale to the "Dicky Drama" was pretty anti-clamatic. I expected a thousand people screaming and yelling... random parades... a bit of craziness... or a LOT of craziness... but in the end it was like watching a single lone firecracker go off.

Most of the real fun had occurred during the week where the Dicky Box was the center of attention for many BM wanderers and events... the French Maids... the Bunnies... people pressing random naked body parts against his box...

(though I think Dicky may have gotten tired of watching body parts pressed by that by the end of the week... once while I wandered past there (I think on Saturday) there were four women with their breasts pressed up in a row against the left side of the enclosure screaming Dicky's name (Dicky! Dicky! Dicky!). Dicky seemed intent on his conversation with a man in a tiger suit to pay attention to their yells... then bounces... then squirming. They finally gave up and left...)

What are your thoughts about the Box?

~Aimless
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Postby dj_john69 » Sat Sep 10, 2005 7:26 pm

Dicky is an idiot...what a lame way to get attention. Get a life DICKY!

~John
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Postby Chai Guy » Sat Sep 10, 2005 7:29 pm

I think Dicky is an incredibly intelligent and emotionally stable human being. He is anything but an idiot. The Dicky Box was one of the more interesting and insightful things I've seen in the playa in the last 8 years of attending the event.
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Postby spectabillis » Sat Sep 10, 2005 7:44 pm

dj_john69 wrote:...what a lame way to get attention.


was this sarcasm, or do you really think it was about attention?
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Postby Mister Jellyfish Mister » Sat Sep 10, 2005 8:46 pm

I liked what Dicky was doing from word go. Say what you will about Larry Harvey, his article on the project was insightful. It was a Copernican revolution of sorts, and I identified with Dicky and the project.

It was also a thrill to visit him while wearing MiniMan. We were all still on a high from the interaction with The Man and somebody shouted "See Dickey, we bring The Man to you!". He was genuinely afraid when we went through the reloading of my flash cannons and ran from his talk hole, so I backed up and raised the arms before ignition.

I wonder how it felt to talk through the hole all week. Maybe like after you've had a phone clenched to your ear for a long conversation. Hey Dickey, you out there? Come to our box and talk to us.
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Postby Stilesfamily » Sun Sep 11, 2005 4:47 am

I imagine it was a profoundly life changing experience, I wish I would have thought of it. We went out to see him and did not get the impression that he was an attention whore. Just the opposite, I got the impression he was trying to discover something about himself. We should all be more focused on self discovery, perhaps we would be less quick to judge those we do not fully understand.
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Postby horseradish » Sun Sep 11, 2005 6:09 am

My opinion on the Dicky box keeps shifting.

First up, it wasn't a particularly original idea. I've seen this done twice before in London - first in an art piece at the Serpentine Gallery called The Maybe, with Tilda Swinton living in a box; then the David Blaine "Above The Below" thing with him living in a box above the Thames.

So to us Brits this was just another guy living in a box.

All that said, though, I liked the idea that Dicky had been to Burning Man a couple of times and felt isolated... but by building the box had suddenly acquired himself a whole clan of friends, with people trying to break him out of the box and a long list of people keen to have sex with him after his release!

Later in the week, when I met someone from Dicky's crew, I realised that with a twenty-strong support team, Dicky wasn't quite so isolated after all. So my view shifted somewhat again.

I don't think the box was great art and I'm not sure what "point" it makes. But I'm glad Dicky did it, he seemed like a good guy and it was a fun idea for the playa. I wonder if anyone will be out in a box next year!
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Crossposted

Postby HappyCJ » Sun Sep 11, 2005 12:41 pm

(I copied this post from the other Dicky thread. Seemed more appropriate to have it here...)

You had an interesting opportunity in getting to speak with Dicky directly. I did not have such an advantage.

However, his intent and message confused me.

As I understand it, he felt isolated and uninvolved at the Burn last year. So this year he took that emotional state and constructed it in the real world as physical manifestation of that emotional state. To what end he was doing this, I do not know.

So to me, that means that he is maintaining the same separation between him and the event.

Early on I had wished that he had put caster wheels on his box, and that he allowed people to write on the outside of it.

If his box had wheels, then people could have "adopted" him, and taken him wherever they wanted to. He would still be isolated from the actual event, but his participation would be based solely on the good will of the other Burners.

I would have dragged him over to the Happy Camp mimosa bar for a while. Somebody else might have tied him to a leash on an art car, and he could get a tour. Others might have taken him to hear Soul In The Machine play, etc, etc, etc.

He would have remained isolated, but he would have seen what others wanted him to see and experience. Some of that would be good, and some of that would have been bad, but he would have had a new and different experience instead of the same isolated experience he had last year.


I also was quite shocked when he got upset that I wanted to write a message on the outside of the box. What an opportunity he missed there! Image all the amazing things people might write about his artistic statement... messages of support, messages of analysis, messages telling him he's a dick, dumb jokes, graphical art... after the burn he could have sat on the playa and read all these messages and seen what his art meant to other people, and what they had to say to him.

It seems to me that those messages (just like the ones on the temple) could have had the most meaning for him, and could have helped him find his stride again.


So all in all, I think the Dicky box was a poorly thought out stunt that could have been a genuinely soulful and mind opening experience, which would help him get through whatever he is working through.

It is a shame.

- CJ Happy
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Re: Crossposted

Postby damon » Sun Sep 11, 2005 7:44 pm

HappyCJ wrote:So all in all, I think the Dicky box was a poorly thought out stunt that could have been a genuinely soulful and mind opening experience, which would help him get through whatever he is working through.
It is a shame.
- CJ Happy



Instead of complying You can incorporate your thoughts into Your project for 2006 BM ...

Being inside the box for the whole weekend is much more than I could stand. Much props for this guy and his crew. It reminds me 'Camp Nothing Without You" movie I saw earlier this year here in Chicag ....
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Postby joshi » Mon Sep 12, 2005 8:07 am

I also was quite shocked when he got upset that I wanted to write a message on the outside of the box. What an opportunity he missed there! Image all the amazing things people might write about his artistic statement... messages of support, messages of analysis, messages telling him he's a dick, dumb jokes, graphical art... after the burn he could have sat on the playa and read all these messages and seen what his art meant to other people, and what they had to say to him.


When I passed the box near the end of the week (he was asleep both times), the thing had tons of messages on it... in fact, if I remember correctly, someone had taped a couple sharpies to the box so people could add their own comments....

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Postby Lassen Forge » Mon Sep 12, 2005 9:35 am

I got to go by the box the next morning, and told the "Dicky Group" what an awesome piece of conceptual art the whole box idea was. Not only was it fitting with the theme thing this year, but if you think about being that dedicated to an idea (original or not) to lock yourself in a big plexiglass box in the middle of the playa for a week - if nothing else, that took a lot of guts. Talk about baring one's self to a huge group of totally unknown strangers... Yow!
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Postby Will » Mon Sep 12, 2005 9:44 am

horseradish wrote:I wonder if anyone will be out in a box next year!


Why just a box? Build a hamster ball! That way, people can shove him too and frow based on their whims! Or not.
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Postby mo_corleone » Mon Sep 12, 2005 3:19 pm

horseradish wrote:First up, it wasn't a particularly original idea.


precisely. i was a bit surprised to find out the dicky box was funded art. i'm not going to go so far as to say i "hated it", but i did lose a bit of respect for it when i discovered it required financial aid from the org.
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Postby Dork » Mon Sep 12, 2005 3:40 pm

"The Man" is also funded art and has never been origional.

Some people "got it" and some didn't. According to the article I read it wasn't a particularly expensive bit of playa art so I'm not sure why people are so pissed off about it. We aren't talking temple-level funding.

Was the "stack of inflatable cushions thing that didn't really work" piece from the previous year funded?
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Postby blyslv » Mon Sep 12, 2005 3:55 pm

Funded or not, it was more a testament to his endurance then about "art". It was interesting, not mind expanding. IMHO, the best most worthwhile art is mind expanding. It forces you to see the world in a different way. The box didn't do that, although perhaps Dicky now views the world in a different way. If so, kudos to him. I gave it a 5.

I do think funded art on the playa is a mistake. If it's too big to do on your own, scale it back, but do it on your own! I spoke with a guy who got a borg2 grant. He said it sured changed his apporach once he started spending other people's money.
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dicky

Postby pattycakes » Wed Sep 14, 2005 4:24 pm

Dicky is Burning Man's first pet.
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Postby butterscotch » Thu Sep 15, 2005 1:11 am

Note: There is a 9/12 update at the Dicky Box website~ http://www.thedickybox.com/thedickyboxupdates.html

Hmm... personal feelings about the Dicky Box.

The Dicky Box brought up some normal feelings of jelousy... Dicky got LOTS of attention... it would be very nice to be the center of attention sometimes.

I spent probably less than 10 minutes talking to Dicky so I can't comment on the type of person he is or what his artwork may have stood for...

I'm very curious about people who spoke with him or a while repeatedly... what kind of thoughts they had...

~Not so Aimless
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Postby mener » Fri Sep 16, 2005 2:05 am

Dicky is the biggest spectator on the playa!! PERIOD. What a fucking moron. Instead of experiencing Burning Man, he sat in his dumb little box and WATCHED everything around him. In his nice, little, safe, dust-free box. He felt like he didnt belong the previous year and now he could convey his shit-head existence on the rest of the playa. To top it off, he was very rude to everyone I know that encountered him. Just my opinion. SAVE THE MAN, BURN DICKIE!!!
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Postby spectabillis » Fri Sep 16, 2005 2:34 am

Does anyone know if he posted his experience somewhere?
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Postby Kinetic IV » Fri Sep 16, 2005 9:01 am

With the ORG funding him I'm surprised we didn't get a special JRS devoted to the rants and ravings from the Dicky Box. In any event I'll be glad when this botched, rip off of ORG funding blows into the distance past and becomes a bad memory.

-Yeah, I'm definitely not a fan of the Dicky box, ie: Mr. Ultimate BM Spectator.
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Postby thesamsam » Fri Sep 16, 2005 9:35 am

Dicky didn't seem like he was in that box for attention, but I never really got the point of it all. It seems like he should have kept journal like notes on one of the walls for people to read. He didn't share his experiances, but he did give into humanity's voyaristic nature. You could watch Dicky do everything in that little box of his, but what did he really add to the burn? He watched everyone while they were watching him or passing him by without even noticing. Does Dicky feel like he was satisfied by his box?
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Postby Chai Guy » Fri Sep 16, 2005 9:50 am

I was really hoping that he would post his journal somewhere (if one was kept) or that he would write about his experience. I think it would be an interesting read.

Thanks,

Chai Guy : )
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Postby ubu » Thu Sep 22, 2005 11:46 am

I love the arrogance of the brits! ha. it's not enough that half the world adopted the english language, we also have to imitate your innovations in the arts!
not. the guy in the box idea goes back much further than tilda swinton.
josef beuys did it, and so have others before him.

one british guy in my camp tried to lay this brit we did it first bullshit about something else on me and I just told him that though england may have given birth to many a child, the children have way outgrown their hoary parents. look to India and weep. reminds me of how new yorkers keep trying to compare everything to new york. makes me laugh so hard.

what are you doing in a dry lakebed in the desert in nevada, then?

I liked the dickey box; i thought it was a clever counter-statement on the playa about activity and interaction, that paradoxically got him lots of attention. No loud music, no manic revelry. Socratic conversation and apparent barriers. originality? please. art? please.

my british friends still use the word "art". how quaint. as quaint as a titular monarch. The frenchies killed art in 1910 with a urinal.

I did not talk to Dickey, but I did give him a copy of The Golden Ass chapters on Eros and Psyche, something I gave to a bunch of people, to read. If you have not read The Golden Ass, grab a copy. 2nd century ad.
egyptian dude. egypt is somewhere east of Reno, methinks.
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Postby ZaphodBurner » Fri Sep 23, 2005 2:10 pm

mener wrote:Dicky is the biggest spectator on the playa!! PERIOD. What a fucking moron. Instead of experiencing Burning Man, he sat in his dumb little box and WATCHED everything around him.


Just for perspective, I'm curous:

What did you do this year?

-c
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Postby skibear » Fri Sep 23, 2005 8:04 pm

Did Dicky have to buy an admission ticket for Burningman?

I'd hope not since he was locked in a fucking cage for almost
the entire event.
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Postby jbelson » Sat Sep 24, 2005 10:56 am

In my opinion, Dicky wasn't the art, but rather the canvas. the people that gathered and did whatever are the art. It was the scene itself. He's just a man in a box with a ittle whole. What he does has serious limits. What thoes who have come to watch him do is limitless. In a sence, he's turning spectators into art.

How that for some bullshit?
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Postby ubu » Tue Sep 27, 2005 7:35 pm

i rather like your bs, call it art criticism.

jordan belson is the name of a way trippy filmaker who animated by painting frame after frame. highly recommended.
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Postby dicky » Thu Sep 29, 2005 2:15 pm

jbelson wrote:In my opinion, Dicky wasn't the art, but rather the canvas. the people that gathered and did whatever are the art. It was the scene itself. He's just a man in a box with a ittle whole. What he does has serious limits. What thoes who have come to watch him do is limitless. In a sence, he's turning spectators into art.

How that for some bullshit?


that was it exactly. it wasn't me, it was the community and the box with all of it's whiteness and my purposful interaction were to offer a blank canvas.

thanks for getting it!

D
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Postby dicky » Thu Sep 29, 2005 2:16 pm

Chai Guy wrote:I was really hoping that he would post his journal somewhere (if one was kept) or that he would write about his experience. I think it would be an interesting read.

Thanks,

Chai Guy : )


i never had time to write. i do have a blog but you can't see it.
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Postby ZaphodBurner » Thu Sep 29, 2005 4:30 pm

I appreciate the art.

The thing about the Dicky Box is, there always seemed to be a crowd around it when I passed, wheras a lot of art--regardless of whether I liked it--seemed to draw much less attention. Most of the critics...I'm still wondering what THEY contributed to the event.

One of our campers was Jack from Fuck in the Box and tried to attack you through the window. Afterward, in camp, he said "Wow, I think I pissed that guy off."

He still insists you killed Mama Salvatore and stole his recipe for ciabatta bread. Dude, seriously...that's just rude.


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