A Projector-Equipped Tesla Is Taking Environmentalism to the Streets

Obscura Digital's Tesla Model S painted Boulder, Colorado with eco-light for the debut of Louie Psihoyos's new documentary 'Racing Extinction.'

by Sami Emory
Mar 11 2015, 4:30pm

Projecting Change in Colorado from Balcony Nine Media on Vimeo.

Endangered animals virtually flood the streets, storefronts, and snow-covered fields of Boulder, Colorado in the projection-mapped companion piece to Academy Award-winning director Louie Psihoyos and The Ocean Preservation Society’s latest documentary, Racing Extinction. Before the film’s debut at the 2015 Boulder International Film Festival, a team drove Obscura Digital’s “undercover mobile eco-projection” vehicle—a specially designed Tesla Model S—throughout Boulder, projecting on monuments and across open spaces to the delight of wide-eyed bystanders and festivalgoers.

As captured by Balcony Nine Media, Obscura’s engineering expanded Racing Extinction’s message beyond the movie screen. Using a FLIR (forward looking infrared) camera, the team mapped a virtual menagerie in arresting visuals “of threatened species on large-scale surfaces” and projected “visualizations of C02 emissions,” driving jarring facts about climate change onto unsuspecting walls and mountains. The project marks the second collaboration between Psihoyos and Obscura, who joined up in 2014 illuminate the UN’s General Assembly with powerful visuals of climate change and extinction for the Climate Summit. 

Below, a few mid-action moments from Racing Extinction’s projection-mapped journey:

GIFs and screencaps by the author

Find out more about Louie Psihoyos’s Racing Extinction on the documentary’s official page and check out Obscura Digital’s portfolio of projection mapping projects on their website.


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