David Best Talks Burning Man

An Interview with the Man Behind the Temple

Feature Interview

By KC Badala, Joseph Cohen, Joseph Blair, John Hassen, Benjamin Horsey, Katrina Horsey, Paul Law, Alexandra Lee, Nicholas Michael, Elias Michael, Melanie Kessinger, Sarah Knopf, Gracie Ramos, Campbell Slavin and Anya Sywulak
From Brandeis Hillel, Drake High, Edna Maguire, Kent Middle, Marin Country Day, Mill Valley Middle, Marin School of the Arts and St. Isabella Schools

There was wood everywhere. Scrap wood, two-by-fours, intricate wood cut outs on every visible surface. A loud, green, ornately decorated “art car” made from an old school bus greeted us as we stepped into the workspace. There was an animal skull on the front and couches inside instead of typical bus seats. On one side, it looked as if it was about to be painted gold, but then the artist decided to stop. Everything about it was over the top. Go big or go home. Large wooden structures were scattered all over the workspace. There were so many separate pieces it was hard to tell what was being built. But we knew what this was all for—Burning Man.

Lisa Marie Schull, warmly welcomed us into the workshop and talked about the project looming large before us. It was a temple, not for any particular religion, but for anyone to use, and it is one of the most important features of the Burning Man event. In fact, Schull is a former lawyer who gave up her job to be on this temple-building crew. 

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Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom

Ode to Technology—The Future

This article is part of our Exploring the Future series. We’re talking to innovators and dreamers in creative media, technology, energy, climate and more—Imagining tomorrow. You can also VIEW VIDEO from our session with Gavin Newsom.


By Miles Andersen, KC Badala, Lizzie Chadbourne, Erin Fernwood, Pierce Freeman, Caroline Frost, Taylor Galla, Matthew Geffen, Victoria Gioia, John Hassen, Scott Hogan, Kathy Khalvati, Olivia Malek, Sam Newsome, Will Ogden, Tom Ogden, Isabelle Kitze, Alina Rainsford, Ashley Salinas, Lacy Slattery, Maddy Suennen, Bridget Went and Burke Wynne
From Branson, Drake High, Hall Middle, Marin Country Day, Marin Academy, Marin Catholic, Marin Horizon, Redwood High, San Domenico, San Rafael High and Tam High Schools

"Designed in California," Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom read, pulling out his shiny iPhone 4 and pointing to the small letters imprinted on its back. “I love that.”

Then he read the next line, where the words “Assembled in China” were printed, and cautioned that if we take the arts out of California education, we will end up with phones that are engraved with “Designed in China, Assembled in China.”

As the state prepares to make another round of budget cuts, including potential cuts to education, Newsom’s words ring like prophesy, not political hyperbole. Preserving the arts is practical, he said, and directly related to our state’s ability to generate fresh ideas and cutting edge technology.

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