Burners Without Borders

Chicago's Burners Without Borders have joined forces with City government and agencies, neighborhood associations and residents to help people help themselves in cases where traditional infrastructures have failed. Together, we can make a difference.

Our Local BwB-CHI Blog


Green Office Art Challenge

The Green Office Artistic Challenge is part of the City of Chicago's Green Office Challenge, and is a local Burners Without Borders project.. Working with 5 companies downtown BwB-CHI has come up with recycled art pieces made from the waste streams of theses companies. This project has been creating new and dynamic partnerships between multiple city departments, schools, business, and arts groups. We are spreading our ethics and playfulness using out art as Direct Action. We are displaying our pieces in gallery's and lobbies both downtown and throughout the city. Please visit www.greenofficeart.com for more information and to get involved!

Loyola's North Shore Earth Day Celebration Concert

For the past 3 years Tom LaPorte and Burners Without Borders has taken over Loyola's North Shore Earth Day Celebration Concert in the Stella Maris Chapel. It's a fun filled evening that becomes a concert, an award ceremony, a recording session and an amazing Earth Day Celebration end event! We invite local leaders and present them with awards on behalf of their communities for all the hard work they've done. We also bring in musicians ranging from classical, world, jazz, hip-hop, and even a Bunny Marching Band! The musicians perform and are recorded there by burner audio tech and DJ Searl1te. We also invite UV spinners, circus acts and other performance artists. It's silly, it's community and it's green!

Downspout Program

The Burners without Borders downspout disconnection project has made the front and third pages of the Chicago Citizen - the very widely circulated paper on the Chicago's south side. Volunteers from the various Chicago Burner tribes participate in the program, assisting with downspout cutting, rain barrel installation, and even Fire Performances from members of Pyrotechniq and the larger Chicago fire dancing community. Click here to download the PDF of the article.

Pyrotechniq fire for BWB


Senn High School “Found Object Art" Project

Local artist and Burner, Kokopaulli of The Sew-Op, is leading a team of three artists in a program at the big Edgewater neighborhood high school. The idea is to teach recycling and to bring out the artist in both students and neighbors. Here’s how it works:

  • More than 60 kids came to the first meeting, and more than 30 signed up. Koko brought in a metal artist and a jewelry maker. By the end of the first meeting, kids were making cool things out of discarded CD’s, springs, cardboard and bottle caps.
  • We are soliciting the found objects from neighbors in block clubs around the schools. Alderman Mary Ann Smith is providing introductions and encouragement. The neighbors are really cool. Some are artists who want to be involved.
  • Eventually, we will incorporate a genius idea from Justine Light, who suggested a small rummage sale to sell off a few of the objects so students and artists can get a stipend, and the project can be self-supporting. Not this time, though. I’m planning to personally buy any needed materials just to get the thing off the ground.
  • The Edgewater Chamber of Commerce’s Sheli Lulkin (a burner fan who helped produce our earth day concerts) has agreed to help place the sculptures and art work in good neighborhood locations.
  • Eventually, some of the bigger pieces will be installed on rooftops along the Red Line so El riders can enjoy recycled art as they pass through.

Click here to read article written by Conscious Choice Magazine.


Earth Day and Green Festival

For 3 years, we have staged an Earth Day concert with the New Millennium Orchestra, founded by Dominic Johnson. It has included projections, fire dancing, and a DJ re-mix. In 2007, we were invited to move it down to McCormick Place as a concluding event at Green Fest on Earth Day (Sunday, April 22nd, 2007). Pyrotechniq and SPUNN performed along with Mason Dixon doing projections.

In April and May of 2008, we will continue the tradition by bringing music, projects, and performances to The Edgewater Earth Day Celebration and Green Festival.

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