The Desert Botanical Garden & the Klip Collective

By Jeff Insel

DBG Klip Squiggles – 70mm, f63, 2 sec

This was the most incredible collaboration yet between the Phoenix Desert Botanical Garden and an art installation. The Klip Collective was started in 2003, led by video artist and projection mapping pioneer Ricardo Rivera. Klip produces site-specific video, light and sound installations. They produced 7 discrete installations around the Garden using sound, lighting and projection transforming cacti, succulents and rock formations into a living nocturnal canvas with the unique landscape as a backdrop for a new and exciting visual and audio experience. Photos with exposure settings taken with my Sony A7 mirrorless camera. Remaining photos taken with my iPhone 10max.

Blue light – 28mm, f6.3, 3.2 sec

The main feature is called Desert Chorale and it includes light and projection onto the mountain of saguaro cactus backdrop of the garden, with the light projecting varying colors and designs on the mountain with sounds that made you sense the wind passing through.

Golden Clouds – 50mm, f6.3, 4 sec, and Orange Yellow lines – 70mm, f6.3, 2 sec

Another very cool installation was the Cacti Synthesis using hundreds of projection mapped cacti and succulents. As the colors morphed with the music, one had the feeling they were looking underwater at coral reefs.

Below: Cacti Green Purple, Mostly small barrel & Colorful Barrel Cactus – all taken with iPhone 10max

Should you see collaboration with the Klip Collective in your area, I highly recommend you check it out. I can only hope they return to Phoenix and our Desert Botanical Garden again one day.

Jeff Insel is a Photo Guide for Arizona Highways PhotoScapes.