Once a year, Nevada’s Black Rock Desert becomes Black Rock City – a temporary place fully dedicated to the arts and self-expression. One of the most notable installations there this year is Shogyo Mujo, a 365-degree projection-mapped skull sculpture created by Joshua Harker in collaboration with BARTKRESA design.

The transient 3D skull “represents the 1st of the 3 marks of Dharma which states that all things are impermanent.” The project’s philosophy is “visualized through a myriad of mappings onto the skull, transforming it into a myriad of unique experiences.”

According to the creators, the concept is that this massive 30-foot skull structure represents our temporary physical state while the projection animations represent our imagination and dreams. “The installation symbolizes the temporary crossroads where they both exist as one,” the website describes.

The trippy but thought-provoking installation is also interesting in the sense that it is 4-dimensional:

  • 1D – point in space where the event occurs (location)
  • 2D – projection patterns
  • 3D – sculpture
  • 4D – animated projections and the event occurring simultaneously in real time

The original version, and 8-foot faceted version created by Josh Harker, was first shown in La Calaca festival in Mexico as a crowd-sourced project. The version created for burning man is more than 3x the size, and was funded through Kickstarter from June 26 to July 26 by 103 backers. The minimum gift backers received was the paper skull, 8 x 11 x 7 inches.

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Here’s a documentary by Adobe Inspire, created by Dan Cowles:

Here’s a a video from Burning Man 2014:

Here are photos from the AdobeMAX installation they did just a few weeks afterwards in Los Angeles:

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For more info about the project, visit the Shogyo Mujo website.

Thanks for reading!