Professional Lighting & Production - Summer 2022 | Page 26


A Dream Come to Life

Immersive Frida Kahlo

By Manus Hopkins

Technology made specifically for projected art shows like the Immersive Frida Kahlo exhibit doesn ’ t really exist . That ’ s how Vittorio Guidotti , creative director of animations for the innovative new art exhibit , puts it .

“ From a technical point of view , we really were pushing the software to its limits , because there is not a software dedicated to this ,” he tells Professional Lighting & Production over Zoom , only a few days before the exhibit ’ s opening . “ This is something very new , so no one has come up with software for visual installations .”
Technological limitations didn ’ t stop Guidotti and his Italy-based creative team at Visioni Eccentriche . That team , led by Massimiliano Siccardi , worked with the North American producers at Lighthouse Immersive to transform a series of venues across the U . S . and Canada into living , moving art exhibitions , showcasing not only the work of Frida Kahlo , but also her life and ideas , projected across walls and floors , creating a truly immersive , enthralling experience . The team had previously put together the highly acclaimed Immersive Van Gogh exhibit , but were intent on challenging themselves to raise the bar they had set with a new immersive experience .
As Guidotti explains , the team saw Frida Kahlo as an icon — similar to a pop superstar in a way . While Kahlo ’ s works are now considered classics , in keeping with the innovative feel of the show , the team of artists set out to display her body of work in the most modern setting possible .
“ We wanted to make a pop show — something that had this pop flavour ,” says Guidotti . “ We relied on that idea in choosing the style of the animations and the creation of the show .”
Frida Kahlo was born in 1907 in Mexico City , where she also died in 1954 . She has long been heralded in her native country , but Guidotti wanted to make sure his exhibit showcased Kahlo as a global icon . While the painter ’ s heritage is a huge part of who she was , to Guidotti , so are her personal qualities , like bravery and perseverance , and it was important that these themes be put across in the Immersive Frida Kahlo show .
“ There is a lot of her personality that matches her art that is very brave ,” says Guidotti . “ That ’ s what stands out as well , besides her art .”
Guidotti goes on to say that Kahlo , as an artist and a figure , symbolizes empowerment and freedom for women , a message he wants to help spread . He also discusses Kahlo ’ s relationship with pain , saying while her art dealt with much suffering , there was always a hopefulness about it as well .
26 | Summer 2022