Burners

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Every year, over 60,000 people make the journey to Nevada’s Black Rock Desert to be part of an experimental community of art, self-expression, and extreme self-reliance. The result of this experiment is Black Rock City's Burning Man Festival, which takes its name from the ritualistic burning of a large wooden effigy.

Elliott Wilcox’s 'Burners' follows a group of british road-trippers as they make the journey from Los Angeles, California to the Black Rock Desert and the Burning Man Festival. Whilst all visitors leave after one week without a trace, Wilcox’s snapshots serve to frame a journey that has been left behind. Here we caught up with the London-based photographer to find out what the atmosphere was like on the road.

TRIP: Tell us a bit about this series. What took you on this road trip?
Elliott Wilcox: I've always been interested in the idea of the road trip. I wanted to document and experience this idea through the camera.

TRIP: Who are the people we can see within the photographs?
Elliott Wilcox: One of the people within the photographs was a friend through a friend but the rest were met on the road. There is always quite a buzz when you meet a person from the same city as you in another country. You become instant best friends.

TRIP: What was the atmosphere like on the road?
Elliott Wilcox: There was lots of excitement on the road which normally peaked in the evenings.

TRIP: Who were the most interesting people you met along the way?
Elliott Wilcox: We met a man from San Francisco who made us drink a strange brew from his prosthetic leg. He was pretty interesting.

TRIP: How was your Burning Man experience?
Elliott Wilcox: Burning Man is a trip.

TRIP: Your personal works look at the traces that are left behind. How does Burners fit in with that idea?
Elliott Wilcox: Burners is the trace of a time that has been left behind - much like the photograph as a recording device.

TRIP: If your road trip had a soundtrack, what album would it be?
Elliott Wilcox: Smith Westerns - Dye it Blonde.