It is appropriate that the fifth anniversary of the founding of the Fastest Pizza Stand should happen in the year of metamorphosis.
In 2015 the Fascist Pizza Stand was born like little playa fairy shrimp. As 2016 approached, we realized it was time to cut our public ties with this authoritarian past and become the Fastest Pizza Stand. Our pizza pledge for 2017 was to bake our pizzas as slowly as possible in a wood fired brick oven pizza altar, in keeping with the year’s Radical Ritual theme. In 2018 we built on our growing brick oven legacy by tinkering a bit. Our disco helmet pizza slicer returned in 2.0 form: bigger, stronger and up to the task of keeping safety third (see #fastestpizzastand hands-free pizza slicing video on instagram).
For our fifth burn in 2019, we aim to slow down the Fastest Pizza Stand by getting a faster oven. We have found that our slow oven means people remain to interact with us for less time, since it is more work for us to maintain while they are hanging out, and we feel that a faster oven will allow us to spend more time being with our visitors creating a vibe and enjoying the gift of immediacy. While our years of brick oven pizza are not behind us, our plan is to evolve our use of the slow burning wood oven for special occasions, and add to our kitchen a new fast cooking propane powered pizza oven that heats up to 900 degrees in ten minutes and makes a pie in less than six.
To mark the occasion of our fifth anniversary we are building THE PIZZA DOME, where one pizza enters, eight slices leave. THE PIZZA DOME will be our interactive parlour of pizzazz. With tables for four set around a circular dance floor, we will invite new and old friends to join us for a pie. The catch is, in order to get a slice, you have to share; by bringing (or finding) enough friends to fill up a four top and placing an order for a pie together. There will be no to-go or delivery options available, you will not be seated until your entire party has arrived.
A pie will be served to your table and one member of the table will be nominated to slice the pie with one of TWO pizza cutting helmet devices: VELVET or DISCO. VELVET is a modified velvet equestrian helmet that will feature a lateral front facing cleaver style slicer, a new addition we are prototyping this year. DISCO, our now three-time burn champion, is a vertical round pizza slicer attached like a unicorn horn to a bicycle helmet, which is covered in small glass squares like a disco ball.
While the possibilities for interactivity in this scenario are endless, we are also offering the option to face off with another four top in THE PIZZA DOME by competing against each other in a slicing competition. Tables will choose VELVET or DISCO helmets, take turns each slicing across their pie one round at a time. At the end, our pizza technologists will judge the winner of the pie slicing contest, with input from the crowd, based on performance and outcome, for which the prize is lifelong bragging rights to either BEST PIZZA PERFORMANCE or BEST PIZZA SLICER or both.
We are introducing a simple sound system this year so we improve our stay and chill vibe, and are working on getting a few art cars to drop by to host pizza parties with us throughout the week. Our new fast propane oven will also be compact enough to break our own rules and fulfill a longtime dream of delivering pizza on the open playa in a PIZZAZZ, which most people don’t know is actually an acronym for pizza autonomous zone.
Interactivity begins when the clock strikes upon the appointed hour, and we light up the fire or kick on the propane to start serving up our interactive gifting and performance to overpower your senses and draw throngs of people from far and wide to this pious pizza palace.
Overall these participatory projects strive to satirize the commodification of one of the things we need most as humans: radically inclusive, participatory eating. We seek to escape the default world culture which simulates consumption with empty calories, and replace it with the experience of immediate, participatory sustenance that is our human connectedness. Also, pizza. This is how Fastest Pizza Stand chooses to manifest immediacy through our radical self-expression: by using conceptual performance and food to connect with fellow humans for a deep dialogue about the universality of what we all hunger for in this world.