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A collection of clippings from the ruminatings, schemings and happenings from our organisation and its members...

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  • The Bug

Reviewing 2019: Chair Report, Financial Report & AGM Minutes


Dear Bugs,

As times are tough in 2020, many of us on the Committee have been thinking about

how grateful we are to be part of a community that is so resilient, adaptive and

collectively minded. What Modifyre looks like in 2020 is still up for discussion,

however as we move forward into 2021, we will be thinking a lot about our cultural

values and “what makes a burn” in the wake of this current pandemic, our new

bushfire reality, and the likelihood that many of the systems which entrench social

inequity continue. We invite our community to use this externally-enforced period

of cocooning as an opportunity to reflect on the elements of a burn that are

important to you, right now.

Though at this point it seems like ages ago, in 2019 our community blossomed.

Modifyre 2019 was astounding- a sell-out year with 500 people, almost no

incidents, and further cementing our position as the wholesome, radical, creative,

and inclusive event that we are. The ritual sound-offering that lulled the entirety

of our event into silent contemplation for the spiralling Temple Burn was

something that many of us will never forget, as rituals for holding intense

collective experiences seem more important than ever in the 2020 context.

Personally, I am especially proud when I hear stories of members inventing and

trialling activities for the first time at Modifyre, and then taking what they learned

back to events in the Default World. Just one example of many is the “Pronoun

Burning Ceremony” that took place one night at our burn barrel outside the heart,

which was created on-the-fly at Modifyre by a couple of newbie burners. A unique

event that I heard referenced throughout the rest of the burn, this ceremony has

been subsequently been hosted and refined at various queer events around

Brisbane with young non-binary people. For me, this is what Modifyre is for: it is

the “petrie dish” in which to try out your bravest and most context-responsive

ideas, before applying your new learnings back home.

Meanwhile, our contingency fund looks healthy, and we have also received a multiyear

permit that lasts until 2023, so for the first time, we have some stability in

regards to our site and finances. A massive thanks must go to our Event Production

Team who worked so hard to put on an amazing event, especially Tom “Bundy”

Hamlyn, our head of DIC (or DIC Head), who held it all together before, during and

after the event.

However, BURN Arts is not just a vehicle for producing Modifyre, but is a year round

participatory arts organisation. In the last twelve months we’ve achieved a

lot as an entity:

1) We received funding to build our own Solar Trailer, which can be loaned to a

variety of civic projects to run off renewable energy. (Thanks goes to Beau

who has put a massive amount of time, skills and resources into making this

project happen!)

2) We’ve released a year-round micro-grant scheme for funding civic projects

outside the burn. We hope to keep growing this arts fund and supporting

more projects in future (maybe one year they’ll be just “grants” instead of

“micro-grants”!) We supported the Future Histories Tours by our very own

Shane “Sugar” Sugrue, which was hosted in an abandoned lot in East

Brisbane. Using his own experiences of wrangling participatory art at

Modifyre to take on issues of place identity, gentrification and apocalypse

(how relevant!), the feedback I got from folks who hadn’t attended

Modifyre before was sheer marvel at the effort, the creativity, and the

welcoming vibes that our community created.

3) We’ve also created the BURN Arts Scrapbook (a play on the Burning Man

Journal) to record and share your musings, experiments, happenings and the

discussions taking place within our community. This has been especially

useful for sharing some of the bigger themes that we’re talking about.

Anybody can contribute to this space, so please take a look!

Lastly, we’ve been looking to the future by engaging in the creation of a Strategic

Plan. This is a living document, which helps us to identify areas that we’d like to

concentrate on cultivating for the next five years (so it can change and is not set

in stone!).

There’s plenty of initiatives outlined under each one of our goals, which the

committee would love to hear your feedback on. We ask all of you to send us an

email at with comments in the next four weeks before we

review and publish the final document. We also encourage you to take a look to

see if you’d like to contribute to any of the initiatives that we’ve outlined in

there! There are plenty of opportunities, including sub-committees, to get in on

the action.

Lastly, a big thanks to the rest of the BURN Arts Management Committee, who have

put in the hard yards this year to get our systems in order and these new initiatives

up and running. You are doing a fabulous job steering us through this uncertain


We wish our community all the best through the next six months- we are with you!



This year we had both our 2018 and 2019 Annual Accounts verified.

(I am going to round the numbers out as I speak so that we don’t get stuck in

numbers land)

• In 2018, with 350 ticket buyers we made a net profit of $12,900 ($12,962.87)

• Selling out at 500pax in 2019 gave us an income increase of $33,300 ($33,326)

for a net profit of $46,200 ($46,288)

• Our net Assets are currently valued $90,300 ($90,295.94) – this includes our

bank assets, fixed assets and is less our ticketing fees

• Our actual cash is currently sitting at $53,700 ($53,773.55)

• So the good news is that the Organisation is financially soluble and we’re in a

really good position to sustainably grow the organisation - both financially and

culturally – if we manage these funds well.

• The forecast budget for the next Modifyre – capped at 600 – is an income of

$71,300 ($71,329) and expenditure of $45,900 ($45,965.95) giving us a profit of

$25,400 ($25,363.05)

• We have been able to increase expenditure on those items we need and

consider a community service; truck hire for the duration of the event, a much

needed fire suit and a drug and alcohol testing station managed externally by

Blow Me First.

• We’ve also been able to introduce micro grants up to $300 for artists who are

looking to bring their participatory art to a civic space – with these grants

currently capped at $2000 per annum.

• All in all, and particularly in the current climate, we are in a really fortunate


Thanks all.

Ang Kirkland

Incoming Treasurer

BURN Arts Inc.

Take a look at our minutes here:

2020-BURN-AGM-_Minutes_20200405- _FInal
Download • 357KB


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