Your indispensable guide to this mysterious collective’s first San Diego event

Words by: Nova Orison

DISORIENT presents: Xylogen Qi

July 27th, San Diego

Secret Location


For those who make the annual pilgrimage to That Thing In The Desert AKA Burning Man, DISORIENT parties are a mainstay of the year round Burning Man culture. On July 27th, San Diego will play host to the first of a new series of DISORIENT events.

Man in dark room at a party wearing goggles with pink light on him.

Led by longtime burners, the tech heavy art parties have been a gravitational foundation of the underground music scene for the past decade. DISORIENT would be categorized under sub-subculture. The secretive parties have a reputation as an alice in wonderland rabbit hole experience: you are part of the art, whether you intended to be or not. The collective counts thousands of members worldwide, events taking place in New York, Hong Kong, California and Dubai regularly. The all-volunteer collective has a reputation for bonkers heavy art installs in raw spaces, disappearing the following haze filled day, now you see it- now you don’t. The heavy emphasis on a series of exploratory vignettes contribute to a sense of energy in flow for hours. Therein lies the charm of the events, one second you are navigating a geometric structure, the next, discussing CRISPR gene editing inside an extensive floral box truck installation.


The intricate art installs are made possible by the extensive network of artists, technologists and musicians. [simple_tooltip content=’‘]DISORIENT[/simple_tooltip] has been doing immersive experience design for almost 20 years. The events have been able to skirt time and space through generous use of archetypal themes with a heavy science bent.

In the most technical sense, each DISORIENT event is a fundraiser for camp art at Burning Man. The camp has been around forever in the Burning Man timespace. The genesis of the camp can be found in Leo Villareal’s early years at Burning Man circa 1994. Villareal’s light installations are a piece of the original bridge that changed the desertscape from a fire festival to a fire and light festival. From his early installations, his vibe attracted attention and artists, leading him to form DISORIENT camp. The dazzling pink and orange frontage has become a staple, easily seen across the open playa. The ambitious art projects over the years essentially functioning as an incubator. 

People at a working table making art with metallic xelophan paper


The year round events are known for a heady mix of psychedelic dazzle for the mind, spirit and body. The focus on body comfort within lounges allows for contemplation and easy social interactions within the fishbowl experience.

The art on display ranges from mathematical highbrow, kitchy lowbrow and middle otherworldly brow. Built into the event structure is volunteerism and art grants for local artists. The art grant process, issues small grants encouraging artists to test concepts and experiment with new mediums.


The commitment to a crystal clear sound has attracted an orbit of weighty names to the DISORIENT project: Nina Kravitz, Stanton Warriors, Wolf + Lamb, Soul Clap, Bedouin, Francois K, FreQ Nasty, DJ Dan, Bassnectar to toss a few. The DISORIENT soundcloud  walks listeners through the home stable of artists as well as visitors who have passed through the decks.


In accordance with the flow of creatives from Brooklyn, LA and SF to San Diego, the collective has amassed a quorum in SD. Xylogen Qi will be their first collective expression in San Diego, partnering with local talent behind the decks Laura Peck, Big Hugs of Digital Cocoon as well as DISORIENT home team talent Orion Keyser and Wolkenkatze.  In addition to the good people at Dancesafe, you can expect to see the Hypercube from Dylan Lovinger And Timm O’connor, The Visionarium VR Lounge w/Microdose VR, an open signup cassette tape dj boxtruck install, an interactive 1970s TV show, the famous lounges and LED art installations.

The art lineup mutates and fractals outward in the weeks leading up to each event, checking online is the best way to stay on top of new additions. The party has been gaining critical mass as more SD artists are stepping up in the vortex. Check the Xylogen Qi artwear suggestions and be prepared to dance all night or lounge: either way, DISORIENT has you covered.

Xylogen Qi Artwear Suggestions:

Ultraviolet mothership sporepods, gravity obsessed silversmith, naugahyde ladyrancher, galactic bioprogramming CRISPR hacker, radical polytopes, avian obsessed aerobic instructor, full spectrum qualified suneaters, time traveling matador, jade laden courtier, seed vault capoeira guardian, 1960s neon signage salesperson, crystal translators, kaftan classicists

Burning structure at night,; people dancing and enjoying the flame at a decent distant