Coachella is known for many things: parties, drugs, free love, and great music. In 2018, it also became known as “Beychella” in honor of Beyonce’s groundbreaking musical performances. However, the free love party atmosphere and great music are also infused with exciting art installations, all expertly curated to reflect the music festival’s sensibility. In 2018, designers Roberto Behar and Rosario Marquardt of R&R Studios have debuted Supernova, 12.40 feet-tall polychromatic star. This explosion of light and chaos of color celebrates the future and stimulates the imagination.
R&R Studios is a Miami-based group which set the Coachella world on fire two years ago with its Bésame Mucho installation in 2016. Roberto and Rosario have been described as “architects of hope” and they specialize in creating art installations for public consumption and fun.
Supernova is a supercharged version of their best art. The supernova comes from the sky, heralding a world that must move into the future. Supernova’s shine comes from a constellation of 13 stars. It’s actually a single multidirectional star which contains 12 stars within, each facing in a different direction. As R&R Studios remarked, “supernova is a shooting star, a temporary streak of light to navigate our time and guide us to new adventures,’ comments the design team. ‘it is a mirage that we can touch, an instant landmark to wish upon a star. an unforgettable luminous symbol of a new world of possibilities for all.”
The Supernova also is functional, actually working as a low-tech satellite which is capable of transmitting images from the festival around the world. The star created a natural, magnetic field where people congregate, and was celebrated as one of the key social meeting spaces at the festival. The Supernova created a large shaded space, which was perfect for festival-goers who wanted a break from the sun where they could relax, rechard, and prepare for more fun.
Coachella described the installation: By day, SUPERNOVA offers shade and a meeting place—a fantastic, utopian and contemporary American green at Coachella. At night, it transforms into a shining star that changes colors and seduces its viewers. SUPERNOVA is a fantasy that becomes real, a symbol for all that’s possible and a personal memory of your experience at Coachella.
In their press release, the design team explained, “It’s extraordinary and fantastic, but a familiar form. It’s a mirage we can touch.”
The Besame Mucho installation was the most-photographed art in 2016. The installation was wall of 100,000 silk flowers spelling out “Besame Mucho,” which means “kiss me a lot” in Spanish. Although many thought the installation was a kind of political statement, the artists said it was actually borne from simpler sentiments. “Were thinking more about America’s outsized, iconic monuments such as the Statue of Liberty and the Hollywood sign,” said Roberto. “Our projects are not meant to be what we think they are. They are poetic statements, and as poetic statements they don’t have one meaning.”
The Supernova continues the R&R tradition of creating pieces which facilitate interaction and communication between people in physical social spaces.