Like all Joshua trees, this one came to life little by little, sprouting one fiber, needle and leaf at a time, until it reached 40 feet tall.
Unlike most Joshua trees, this one grew in eight weeks, as Las Vegas artist Eric Vozzola meticulously animated it with individual brushstrokes between the pitch-black sky and the dazzling ombre sunset that form the background of his new mural on the side of the Area15 building.
The mural, which Vozzola free-handed in collaboration with Meow Wolf, will welcome visitors into the otherworldly realm that the Santa Fe, New Mexico-based art collective is planning to open later this year.
The tree is one image on an otherwise abstract art piece that Vozzola hopes will engulf visitors’ peripheral vision and immerse them in the Meow Wolf experience.
“I was super nervous to begin,” Vozzola says. “It was so daunting. But it came out better than I thought. It takes my breath away.”
Vozzola visited Meow Wolf’s walk-through installation in Santa Fe in 2018. He was inspired by the “House of Eternal Return” and its ability to transport visitors to other worlds and juxtapose several contrasting experiences.
He spent 300 hours making the “Window Into the Multiverse” look like it was emerging from behind the 16,000-square-foot wall.
Vozzola compares looking at the mural to hiking through the Southern Nevada desert.
“When you look at that vast landscape from afar, it can look breathtaking,” he says. “But when you hike through it, you notice these natural elements that look different up close. I like that immersive experience.”
Contact Janna Karel at firstname.lastname@example.org or 702-477-3835. Follow @jannainprogress on Twitter.