Photos: Artown's Compression! Art And Fire

Jul 31, 2016

Hundreds of people came out for Controlled Burn’s ninth annual Compression Art and Fire Festival this weekend, one of the last events of Artown. 

Reno Public Radio’s Aishwarya Krishnamoorthy was there and has more.

The air was heavy with haze and smoke from fire-spouting metal sculptures and burning vehicles. Nearby, Blacksmith Justin Cunningham, a former Controlled Burn dancer, was showing off his metal-working skills.

“It’s a powerful thing, you know, moving things that shouldn’t move," he says. "Heating up and molding steel the way you want it to do.”

Members of A.V.A. Ballet Theatre perform at Compression, accompanied by members of Controlled Burn Reno.
Credit Aishwarya Krishnamoorthy

Another performance by members of A.V.A Ballet Theatre.
Credit Aishwarya Krishnamoorthy

As night fell, several performance groups danced alongside fire-twirlers and flame-throwing trucks.

Ricci Kilgore is a disabled fire dancer and a former Paralympic skier. As flames shoot out from the structure above her head she says the thrill outweighs the danger.“Well, if you play with fire, you definitely get burned. It’s just part of the game but performing in front of people and dancing with fire is worth it to me.”Controlled Burn will also have installations at Burning Man next month.Check out our photo gallery below:

Behind the scenes of the Compression stage.
Credit Aishwarya Krishnamoorthy

The man, who goes by "Mr. Wizard," makes sure the pyrotechnics fire at the right times.
Credit Aishwarya Krishnamoorthy

Credit Aishwarya Krishnamoorthy
Drummers from the group Reno Taiko Tsurunokai perform at Compression.
Credit Aishwarya Krishnamoorthy

Credit Aishwarya Krishnamoorthy

Credit Aishwarya Krishnamoorthy