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Burning Man Projection Mapping Show Stays Cool With Tempest Projector Enclosures

Bart Kresa Design employed Tempest projector enclosures to keep projectors from overheating during the Black Rock Desert-based Burning Man festival.

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Spending five days in Nevada’s Black Rock Desert in hot temperatures and dry conditions may seem like an unappealing experience, but that’s exactly what tens of thousands of people do every year to create Black Rock City, home of the “Burning Man” music festival.

Defined as a “temporary metropolis dedicated to community, art, self-expression and self-reliance,” Burning Man may not seem like an event that features high-tech 3D, 360 degree projection mapping, but that’s exactly what the festival planned to showcase for nightly entertainment throughout the five-night event.

Burning Man aimed to feature an entrancing projection mapping of Shogyo Mujo, a 30-foot multi-faceted skull sculpture covered in Tyvek, but ensuring the projection technology would function in such challenging outdoor conditions posed a challenge to Santa Monica’s Bart Kresa Design (BKD), designer and producer of Shogyo Mujo’s visual content.

PHOTOS: Shogyo Mujo Projection Mapping Showcase

BKD called upon Tempest, an LA-based projector enclosure specialist, to create the right environment for the projection mapping showcase.

The installation was made possible through the construction of four scaffolding towers with two Christie Roadster high brightness WU14K-M WUXGA 3-chip DLP digital projectors, featuring Mirage advanced 3D technology located atop each tower to play images onto the skull.

For each of the 55-pound projectors, Tempest provided eight Blizzard Stretch climate-controlled enclosures.

“We chose Tempest, as we knew their enclosures would be able to withstand the harsh desert conditions,” says Bar Kresa in a Tempest case study. “Working with them was a pleasure, we received great technical support and the whole installation and performance proved completely trouble-free.”

The enclosures leverage Tempest’s Goldilocks system to eliminate overheating and condensation. Heat is removed when the lamp is on or when the enclosure is heated by the sun, keeping the environment around the projector cool.

Every evening when the sun went down, Shogyo Mujo was brought to life by the Christie Roadster projectors, Mirage’s 3D technology and engaging content created by BKD.

The 360-degree projections that animated the skull were designed to symbolize the audience’s hopes, dreams, imagination and spiritual connection to the universe.

According to the case study, “these nightly video interactions between the sculpture and participants became a vehicle for experiencing and channeling their visions into the physical world.”