Described as a “twenty-first-century learning laboratory,” San Francisco’s Exploratorium has been a landmark and local destination for decades. When they began to outgrow their original location, they chose Pier 15, on the city’s historic Embarcadero, for their new home. The move also provided an opportunity to evolve the concept of a learning museum, including its physical space.

For opening day, Obscura used architectural projections to transform the façade of the Pier 15 building into a luminous portal.

Emergence, the resulting visual journey, employs a montage of fluid dynamics, microorganisms, particle interactions, living systems, crystallization, and plant growth to evoke a sense of wonder about nature and the universe.

Created in ultra-high-definition video, the real-life visualizations of natural subjects were projection-mapped onto the surface of the building, creating the illusion of being contained within its structure. The imagery was accompanied by Obscura’s original sound compositions, which served to heighten the visceral experience.