Transmigration Wood Sculpture – Lakes Fire 2022 + Burning Man 2018

Wood Sculpture Transmigration

Public Art Installation

This sculpture was inspired by the myth of the Phoenix. According to the Greek historian Herodotus (b: 484 BC), the phoenix was a beautiful, mythical bird from Ethiopia with elaborate plumage. This gorgeous bird made a nest of cypress branches and then set itself on fire. After three days, the phoenix emerged from its own ashes – reborn and released from the sentence of death, able to live on forever and thus serves as a symbol of hope and renewal.

The form of Transmigration is loosely based upon this plumage, not only of wings in flight but on fire. In the apex of the triangle, the Burning Man symbol is referenced as a subtle salute to the origins for this sculpture. The word “transmigration” means to pass from one place to another in the physical sense or spiritual in the theory of reincarnation. After the sculpture was displayed on the playa of Black Rock City, it was meant to be consigned to the flames and burned to the ground as a symbol of renewal. Due to management issues that never happened…but in 2022 after receiving a grant from the Arts Grant Team for Lakes of Fire, it was rebuilt using recycled and new wood and rose again at Lakes of Fire.

View time lapse builds of Transmigration in a dust storm on the playa
View time lapse of clouds & bikes passing by Transmigration on the playa
View time lapse time lapse of Transmigration test builds in Chicago
Read A Tale of Storms & Sculptures …There & Back Again Burning Man 2018
View the Successful Indiegogo Campaign 122% Funded


11h x 11l x 15w feet Wood
by Jyl Bonaguro

ReBuilt in 2022 Recipient of an Art Grant for Lakes of Fire 2022 with the support of my Lakes of Fire build team – Quinn Auerbach, Shorty Belle, Elly, Ben Stroh, Nick Vaid, and Jeff Zelnio with Video Mapping Production by Starvin Marvin along with placement support from Quinn Monforton of Dewey Decibels and Samantha Rose Buccheri.

Built in 2018 with the support of BAAAHS Chicago & San Francisco and her Black Rock City build team Zachary Fietsch, Greg Slade, Stafford Brannan, Shelby Stark, Peter Winkler, Shorty Belle, Aaron Oppenheimer, Jeff Krucek, Therron Ricks, Ted Barrus, Ido Beeri, Shlomi Barak, Solomon Hursey, Oscar Groves, Ethel Bourbon, Bryan Thurston, Kevin Trujillo, Elizabeth Love, Jeff Zelnio, Ben Stroh and via the generous support of her Indiegogo campaign donors.