The Coachella Crane

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Courtesy Crimson Collective/ Michelle Cassel

Ever since Woodstock, music festivals have morphed into celebrations of eclectic hedonism and of course, all types of artistic expression. Indio, California’s Coachella, which starts tomorrow, is no exception.  In addition to three days of music, the festival offers dozens of art installations. This year the most prominent, right at the festival’s entrance, is called Ascension, The Crane. It’s just that: a giant white crane made of modular aluminum tubes and a mesh fabric called Textilene. It measures 45-feet-tall with a 150-foot wingspan, and the big bird’s multi-colored LED lighting is powered by two adjacent photovoltaic stations that also serve as benches and canopies. The 35,000 pound crane, which was put together on site (all of its components fit into a single shipping container), was designed by Crimson Collective,  a group of socially-oriented designers led by LA visionary Behn Samareh. The group works to “bridge the gap between art and architecture,” through interactive installations. Check out a fantastic video detailing the construction here. It should be noted that the crane is a symbol of grace, wisdom and peace. This explains why all origami seems to be crane-based, including, apparently, gargantuan origami.

8 Responses to “The Coachella Crane”

  1. […] In recent years, architects have been playing a prominent role at the Coachella music festival, with Ball Nogues building impressive pavilions the past two years. This year, a 150-foot crane made from futuristic materials and designed by LA architects Behn Samareh and Ando Pndlian has landed on the polo fields. Check it out before it takes flight. The Architect’s Newspaper […]

  2. amoration says:

    Leaving now to go see it! My handsome husband Brent Heyning did the lighting and power hookup with Behn’s team at Coachella and it’s been a great process to see this piece develop its wings.

  3. Ian Garrett says:

    Hey Amoration! Brent is awesome, He, Nick Vida and I were the lighting design team, I didn’t get to go out due to Flu, i’ll be there tearing it down after Stagecoach next weekend!

  4. nick vida says:

    Thanks to REC Solar for providing the solar panels for this installation. We were able to run the entire weekend without using the backup generator at all. Solar design by Nick Vida. Many thanks to Brent Heyning and crew for an impressive lighting installation and some amazing programming.

  5. […] Coachella Crane Sam Lubell / The Architect’s Newspaper Coachella’s Giant Origami Solar-Powered Crane Installation […]

  6. Gothalot says:

    Wow. Incredibly it looks JUST like the crane my crew and I built for 2008’s Burning Man with the exception that we made it of wood and burned it down at the end of the event.

  7. Gothalot says:

    Theres a link to a pic of the 2008 Temple of Community/Rue Morgue’s Sembazuru FYI.

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