Nowhere- The biggest Burn regional event in Europe
Nestled in the arid and desert-like landscape of Castejón de Monegros, Spain, lies Nowhere—a dazzling celebration that captures the essence of Burning Man's core principles. Since its inception in 2004, Nowhere has blossomed into the largest Burning Man regional event in Europe with more than 3000 participants, drawing a diverse and international crowd each year.
From Roots to Growth: Nowhere's History
Nowhere's journey began with UK burners organizing decompression parties in London back in 2002. Since its establishment in 2004, the event has relocated to various spots in the Navarra and Aragon regions, finally finding its home near Sariñena in the Province of Huesca. With attendance fluctuating over the years, Nowhere remains a thriving and cherished gathering that embraces the spirit of Burning Man's core principles.
Embracing Participation and Non-Commerce
Nowhere stands in stark contrast to typical music festivals, where participation takes center stage. Every attendee is encouraged to actively engage in various tasks, from setting up and maintaining the event grounds to offering first aid services—all done on a volunteer basis. There are no scheduled performers or stages; instead, participants contribute out of their own pockets, following the rule of non-commerce. The spirit of sharing and collaboration fosters a unique and immersive experience.
Barrios: Vibrant Communities at Nowhere
At the heart of Nowhere are "Barrios," vibrant camps where participants come together, sharing resources like kitchens and shade structures while offering services or attractions to others. Each Barrio registers for the event and is assigned a location based on size and sound zone preferences. In 2018, around 50 Barrios dotted the landscape, ranging from large sound camps to serene meditation spaces, with Werkhaus serving as a home to core event volunteers.
The Freecampers and Their Creativity
Beyond the Barrios, independent campers find their place as Freecampers, where the majority of participants reside. Freecampers unleash their creativity by crafting their own shade structures and artwork, creating unique public spaces like the famed "Middle of Frickin Freecamp" (MOFF), a hub for gatherings and workshops that has become a Nowhere institution.
Art: The Soul of Nowhere
Art breathes life into Nowhere, and while large-scale artworks are a rarity due to the strict non-burning policy, creative expressions abound. Nowhere extends art grants of up to €3000 to passionate artists, promoting innovation and inspiring awe. Pre-registered art installations grace the playa, adding an extra layer of enchantment to the event.
The Unique Layout and Sound Zones
Nowhere's layout, crafted solely by participants, takes on a compass-like shape, with Barrios arranged in a circle-like formation. Four distinct sound zones, ranging from a no-sound policy in the blue zone to lively dance camps in the red zone, cater to diverse musical tastes. The free camping areas follow a similar setup, ensuring a harmonious auditory experience.
Middle of Nowhere: A Hub of Interaction
Nowhere's central shade structure, known as Middle of Nowhere (MoN), serves as a public space for relaxation, workshops, dancing, and socializing. Other essential public infrastructure includes NoInfo, the general point of information, and La Cantina, where volunteers are treated to complimentary meals. Werkhaus ensures the smooth operation of public facilities.
No Open Fires
Nowhere places a strict ban on open fires as a fundamental aspect of the event. The dry and wildfire-prone region during the summer necessitates this safety measure. Consequently, art installations are not set on fire, and fire spinning is confined to a designated area supervised by fire marshals. The burning of an effigy occurred only once in 2016, following an agreement with local authorities to ensure a controlled and secure environment.
Nowhere, Europe's largest Burn event, is more than just a gathering; it's an enchanting tapestry woven together by participants who wholeheartedly embrace the ten core principles that define the event's soul. Each year, Nowhere becomes a vibrant and transformative experience, uniting people from diverse backgrounds under a shared passion for creativity, participation, and boundless expression. As Nowhere continues to inspire and captivate, its legacy of artistic wonder and communal spirit will undoubtedly endure for years to come.