Walkabout Woods

Walkabout Woods started life as a pseudo-Xmas tree farm for the Fishbon event Fishmas Bizarre in December 2010. It was during this period that I started working with Jonah Haas. After the event Jonah suggested we expand the forest and bring it to Burning Man. I agreed. We brought Dominique Reboul on board as the third part of the triumvirate and Walkabout Woods was officially born.

The “Woods” consisted of three parts: the trees, the Boiler Room and a climbable pyramid. To raise the money we put together a Kickstarter campaign; you can see the movie for it here.

Courtesy of Alan Macy, we were given the use of the yard at the now legendary 515 Garden Street in Santa Barbara (see opening film here) and got down to business.

In total we made about 130 trees (see video here) in four different sizes and had somewhere between eighty and a hundred people working on the project. It didn’t matter who you were and what your level of skill was, there was always something you could do.

Initially we brought a small version of it to Lightning in a Bottle but it was on the Playa at Burning Man that it really shined. During the day time it created a slash of intense colors across the Black Rock Desert but in reality Walkabout Woods is a nighttime installation and with the night it became extraordinary as all the trees flashed with the changing color of the lights, lasers sneaked across the entire installation, the universe inside the pyramid came to 3D life and all the pieces of the Boiler Room kicked into action. Truly a tour de force.

To see more imagery of Walkabout Woods go to the Walkabout Woods website and visit the gallery page.

Walkabout Woods was at:
Lightning in a Bottle, 2011
Burning Man, 2011
Escape from Wonderland, 2011
Lucidity Festival, 2012
and parts of it have shown had other events far and wide

© Copyright Jonathan PJ Smith