Black Rock City, Nevada - August 2016
‘This code consigns you with exclusivity to find other beings with shared values and passions, who walk the same path... If you are reading this, you might have the cloaked quote with the code, or exclusively have 1 out of 221 important Da Vinci map pieces to decipher the code.‘
The ‘Mechanical Lion’ concisely conveys the kind of extreme enthusiasm with which riddle-filled, code-breaking, exhilaratingly brainy quest could unleash and what a better place than Burning Man 2016 - Da Vinci Workshop theme for exactly that.
221 folks took part in a wiz to decipher a mysterious code. Inside a suitcase at the Burning man Temple, few times a day mysterious red envelopes appeared containing a piece of a map with a riddle or a quote or what the author coins as ‘Arielism’, an original short quote set to help define the map of higher consciousness.
One of the 221 quotes cloaked in code along with a follow-up letter illustrates how to decipher it. The letter suggests several ways to find the cloaked quote, and the first among equals is ‘Work with others’, which spring from the spirit of Burning Man. Other options include, ‘Collect the red letters,' ‘Assemble the Map’ or ‘find the ‘Thunder Gumbo’ mutant art car deep in the playa’ and more.
The author Ariel De Lion and artist Steffi Min. In this gleefully erudite suspense quest, takes the format they have been developing at Future Clear and Alephnull, into an immersive global journey. Future Clear is a Brooklyn-based production collective creating environments and events to act as experiments, testing grounds, for the formation of a new way of living and interaction. Alephnull is a science collective aiming to achieve an active field required for the foundation of literature, clinical research, and examination of the consciousness phenomena.
“It had long since come to my attention that people of accomplishment rarely sat back and let things happen to them. They went out and happened to things.”
~Leonardo Da Vinci
The Mechanical Lion’, history’s first programmable computer drawings, were exhibited in Milan, around 1495 by Leonardo Da Vinci, to demonstrate an old man's prowess and to flatter and amuse the new French king. Even in the technology-sated early 21st century, it is impressive. In the early 16th century, it was the highest of hi-tech, up to 300 years ahead of its time.
NASA scientist, Mark Rosheim, claimed that Da Vinci’s “programmed carriage for automata” were: “...the first known example in the story of a civilization of the programmable computer.”
Da Vinci’s original “Mechanical Lion” has been long lost.