CNN Taps Obscura to Project 2016 Election Night Results on Empire State Building

October 31, 2016 Projects

To cap off what has been arguably one of the most crucial and hotly-contested Presidential elections in American history, CNN wanted to create an epic activation to make their election night 2016 coverage memorable. Having seen our previous projection events, CNN reached out to Obscura to help develop the creative strategy to realize their vision.

CNN partnered with Obscura to capture the emotion of this election year through projections of campaign trail photos, historic moments, and real-time election results on the south façade of the Empire State Building during their election night coverage. The Empire State Building provided the ultimate canvas to share this historic moment with the world.


The ESB activation was the grand finale of the #MyVote nationwide tour — a partnership between CNN, Instagram, Facebook and CA Technologies. #MyVote imagery was also projected on the Newseum in Washington, D.C. and on display at the Miracle Mile in Las Vegas, NV.


To accomplish the ambitious ESB projection feat, Obscura set up 40 J Series Christie projectors on a nearby rooftop to display 60 pieces of original content and three dynamic elements on a 375′ x 205′ area of the building façade. The dynamic projections included a “Countdown Clock” used to announce the closing of each poll, a “270 to Win” display showing the electoral college votes won by each candidate, and a “Balance of Power” display on the Newseum showing the balance of power in the House of Representatives as it unfolded through the night. Obscura’s production team worked closely and diligently with the city of New York and multiple municipal agencies to make this happen.

Obscura crew prepping on the rooftop (Photo by Josh Brott)

Obscura crew prepping on the rooftop (Photo by Josh Brott)

By Will Chase