Art Voices: Boundless Space | The Possibilities of Burning Man

24 September 2021
Join cultural strategist, patron of the arts, academic and lecturer Princess Alia Al-Senussi PhD in conversation with Burning Man Director of Creative Initiatives Kim Cook, Burning Artist and Burning Man Board Member Fab 5 Freddy, and Sotheby’s Head of Digital Strategy for Auctions, Modern & Contemporary Art, Americas, Harrison Tenzer as they celebrate a unique partnership between Burning Man Project and Sotheby’s. They will explore how Burning Man has evolved from a community of artists, misfits and makers to a global cultural movement, what it takes to create a city featuring hundreds of awe-inspiring artworks in the middle of Nevada’s Black Rock Desert, and introduce the upcoming charitable sale, Boundless Space: The Possibilities of Burning Man. With an emphasis on Black, Indigenous, and Persons of Color (BIPOC) artists, the sale features an eclectic, genre-defying collection of artworks by creators from 22 countries across the globe.

Meet the Panel

Kim Cook, Burning Man, Director of Creative Initiatives

Kim Cook creates: Impact. Stories. Community projects. Places. Experiences. Spectacle. She successfully builds urban, regional, national, and international projects that increase mutual understanding, advance civic well being, elevate cultural engagement, and further the aesthetic design elements of communities. And sometimes she does things for the adventure, the learning, the discovery, the fun. As Burning Man’s Director, Creative Initiatives, Kim works in the frontier of exploration for projects and collaborations that extend Burning Man culture into the world. Most recently she facilitated the team for “Virtual Burning Man 2020” with 10 technology platform partners offering a range of digital, dynamic, and interactive approaches to the “Multiverse.” In 2021 Kim is taking the lead to develop the Boundless Space auction collaboration with Sotheby's and is the creative lead and project partner for a planned exhibition at Chatsworth House in England.

Kim has a B.A. in Performing Arts, an M.A. in Arts & Consciousness, is a Kennedy Center 2004-05 Fellow, a 9 time recipient of National Endowment for the Arts Grants, and former President of the Arts Council, New Orleans. She serves on the SXSW Art Advisory Committee, taught creative placemaking for the National Consortium for Creative Placemaking from 2019 - 2021, and is featured as a contributor to Extraordinary Partnerships: How the Arts and Humanities are Transforming America, edited by Christine Henseler, and The Routledge Handbook of Placemaking, edited By Cara Courage, Tom Borrup, Maria Rosario Jackson, Kylie Legge, Anita Mckeown, Louise Platt, Jason Schupbach both published in 2020. Kim also holds a Certificate in Circus Dramaturgie from the French and Belgian National Circus Schools (CNAC and ESAC).

Fab 5 Freddy, Burner Artist & Auction Committee

Fab 5 Freddy was born in 1959 in Brooklyn and emerged in the late 1970s as a New York City graffiti artist who became one of the first to exhibit his paintings internationally. Along with friends and contemporaries, Futura 2000, Keith Haring, Lee Quinones and Jean-Michel Basquiat, Fab was a key player in New York’s 1980s downtown cultural scene and instrumental in elevating graffiti into a disruptive movement that would eventually give birth to street art. In addition to his visual art, Fab co-produced, starred in and composed the music for the cult classic film Wild Style and went on to direct music videos for numerous hip hop stars like Snoop, Nas, Queen Latifah and others. From the late 1980s into the mid 90s he was the original host of YO! MTV Raps, the ground-breaking TV show that took hip hop culture global. Today he continues to make visual art and produce and direct projects for film and television. His recent film is a feature-length documentary he produced and directed for Netflix titled, Grass is Greener which was released globally in 2019. The film examines the history of cannabis, music and criminal justice in America and to date it has been viewed more than 30 million times. His art is currently on exhibit at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston in the show titled Writing the Future: Basquiat & The Hip-Hop Generation.

Harrison Tenzer, Head of Contemporary Online Sales at Sotheby's

Harrison Tenzer joined Sotheby’s Contemporary Art department in New York in 2016. At Sotheby’s, Mr. Tenzer’s focus is sourcing for, planning and selling the Contemporary Art online Sales, a new corporate initiative for the company. Prior to joining Sotheby’s, Mr. Tenzer spent four years in the Contemporary Art department at Christie’s, New York in various roles including marketing, cataloguing and business-getting. Following his time at Christie’s, Mr. Tenzer was a Fine Art specialist at Wright auction house in New York. Aside from his various roles in the auction world, Mr. Tenzer is a co-founder of Brooklyn Rail Curatorial Projects, a division of the publication the Brooklyn Rail, which organizes diverse exhibitions throughout the United States. Mr. Tenzer has curated a number of exhibitions both within and outside of Brooklyn Rail Curatorial Projects. Mr. Tenzer is from Los Angeles and is a graduate of Crossroads. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Pennsylvania.

Princess Alia Al-Senussi, PhD, Cultural strategist, Patron of the Arts, Academic and Lecturer

Princess Alia Al-Senussi, PhD, is an active member of the contemporary art world and currently serves as Art Basel's UK and MENA Representative, CEO of Museo 2.0 and a Senior Advisor to the Ministry of Culture of Saudi Arabia amongst other roles as a cultural strategist, writer, patron, public speaker and academic.

Dr Alia’s work focuses on developing international partnerships. Dr Alia is closely collaborating with the new Thunaiyat Ad-Diriyah Foundation, which is currently developing two major international biennales, as well as working with the Visual Arts Commission on strategy. She is an affiliated scholar and guest lecturer at Brown University’s Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs and its Center for Middle East Studies and has also served as Senior Arts and Culture Advisor to the Milken Institute. For over a decade Dr. Alia has been an Advisor to Generation Three Family Partners.

In her professional and philanthropic roles, Dr Alia brings a wide breadth of experience from previous affiliations including chair of the Tate Young Patrons (and representative to the Tate Patrons board), the Board of Patrons of Art Dubai (serving an integral role in the founding of the fair) and currently continuing to serve as a founding member of the Tate's Acquisitions Committee for the Middle East and North Africa, the Board of 1:54 The African Art Fair, and the Middle East Circle of the Guggenheim.