The House of Baba Yaga
Baba Yaga is an ancient mythos at the intersection of the mechanical (the moving chicken legged house) and the natural world (Baba Yaga herself, the classic representation of the witch in the woods). It is a story of the coexistence of technology and nature within the realm of magic and the human psyche. Baba Yaga’s House is a 2018 Burning Man Honorarium Project. After a successful installation at BRC, our house is now at Art Tech in Reno, NV where it awaits permanent placement.
The Lore of Baba Yaga
The story of Baba Yaga has been passed down through generations in both slavic and baltic countries. The first written account of Baba Yaga appeared in 1755. The fable of Baba Yaga has been adapted and retold in countless forms including books, movies, plays, even a symphony. She is seen as an ambiguous, complex figure. She is the crone living at the edge of the woods that encompasses many tropes: the trickster, the fairy godmother, the witch, the evil hag. The version of Baba Yaga you will meet is determined by your character. If she is helpful or harmful is up to you.
Baba Yaga's House: Construction and Design
Baba Yaga's House is 28ft tall with 12ft chicken legs covered in custom hand cut scales and misc automotive parts. Although the traditional Baba Yaga Hut doesn't have a front staircase to discourage unwanted visitors, we've decided that for safety reasons and to help with the flow of traffic two staircases creates accessibility and additional support. Yaga’s house also features a whimsical loft, nine custom stained glass windows and a bird cage balcony.
Inside the House: Treasures and Trials
Our inspiration for the top level of Yaga’s House was the wizard's bedroom from the Miyazaki film, Howl's Moving Castle. We wanted to re-create a dragon den feel; covering the walls and ceiling with trinkets, glistening baubles, giant paper flowers, sparkling doodads and other gilded items that offered a fascinating contrast against the stark, barren Playa.
Beyond Burning Man: The Permanent Installation of Baba Yaga's House
Baba Yaga’s Book Club is still working on a permanent place for our beloved House. We are hopeful that it will be in a semi-public setting where many folks can come and enjoy it. If you’re interested in placing Yaga or have suggestions please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Also if you have photos or videos of the house we would love to see them. <3