Projecting Change: The Empire State Building
On Saturday, August 1st, 2015, Photo Ark images illuminated the Empire State Building in a first-of-its kind live video projection that showed beautiful, inspiring imagery of endangered species to the world as never seen before.
For the first time in New York City history, this stand-alone, architectural projection art event featured towering images of endangered species—more than 350 feet tall and 186 feet wide, and covering 33 floors—on the south façade of The Empire State Building in an art event meant to draw attention to the creatures’ plight against mass extinction.
Using 40 stacked, 20,000-lumen projectors on the roof of a building on West 31st Street, Travis Threlkel, founder of Obscura Digital, and Louis Psihoyos, director of the documentary Racing Extinction, illuminated the night with live video projections, including (an 8 minute environmentally-focused tableau, combined with iconic imagery of endangered species, that made each 15 minute cycle running throughout the night a unique experience) showing a Noah’s ark of animals including Cecil the Lion, a snow leopard, a golden lion tamarin and manta rays, along with snakes, birds and various mammals and sea creatures choreographed to Racing Extinction’s original songs.
The projections featured photography from Joel Sartore/Photo Ark, Shawn Heinrichs and David Doubilet. Throughout, the LED lights atop the building were coordinated with the projection, by the building’s lighting designer.