The journey begins with the map. The map is located at the Ace Hotel in Palm Springs, which is also where I found the largest grouping of young people I had ever seen in Palm Springs. Although I desperately wanted to join the raging pool party happening, I continued onto my first stop on the map.
After hitting a few spots, including Juliao Sarmento's closed room exhibit at the Desert Lodge and Jeffrey Gibson's wind mill in the Palm Springs Art Museum Sculpture Garden, we drove up the hill onto the most arguably popular exhibit, Doug Aitken's Mirage. Driving up into this sparse residential area, there are open houses happening and skeletons of homes on the hillside, a neighborhood on the brink of development. At the top, a striking reflective surface shines from the base of the mountains.
Famed Land artist, Doug Aitken has taken one of these undeveloped structures and covered both the exterior and interior with mirrors.
Nearing the house, it feels like the surrounding landscape is closing in as well. Suddenly the horizon lines match up and there is a strict mirrored line of perspective encircling the house. Aitken has created an image that is constantly in flux with its environment, ever changing with light and time. Although a stagnant space, the visuals of Mirage are intensely interactive. The individual can play with the space and the image, displaying the landscape as the visual piece itself.
A perk of this being a largely inhabited piece allowed me to chat with other participants to hear what people had discovered and what was not to be missed. A community was being built around this treasure hunt that we were all on and made this experience especially unique and enlightening for me.
Next week, I further discover how the artists of Desert X utilized the spaces of Palm Springs and continued to keep me open minded and guessing about what I was even looking for.