Light as an artistic medium has always been tough to harness: it can’t be put on brushes or cut up and pasted down. With the advent of projection mapping–a technology that turns any 3-D object or surface into a display for video projection–that has changed. New York-based multimedia performance artist a dandypunk (real name: Joel Sebastian) is a pioneer in the projection-mapping genre and uses light as a painting and animation tool (he calls himself a “digital light poet”). In this dazzling two-and-a-half-minute video, compiled of clips from a seven-and-a-half-minute live projection-mapping performance, the artist bounces orbs of light like they’re basketballs, paints glowing rainbows with his finger, battles luminescent octopus tentacles, and rides galloping light-unicorns. He’s something of a one-man circus.
Instead of “thinking outside the box,” dandypunk urges us to “Transcend the Box”–the title of this piece. The self-described “imagineer in exile” specializes in the “art of light alchemy,” as he puts it on his website. “A dandypunk spends most of his time in a half waking, half sleeping state where he is constantly bombarded with visions of creatures, lands, and characters from alternate dimensions,” he writes (that explains the unicorn). This quick peek into his alternate dimension makes us want to leave our own for a while.