Dezeen Magazine

The Circle of Land and Sky by Phillip K Smith III
Installations include The Circle of Land and Sky by Phillip K Smith III. Photograph by Lance Gerber

Instagram users capture Desert X installations in California's Coachella Valley

The inaugural Desert X art festival is underway in Southern California, where visitors are using Instagram to share images of installations including an entirely mirrored cabin and a seemingly infinite tunnel into the earth.

The new art festival is taking place in the desert of the Coachella Valley, which hosts one of the world's largest music festivals each year.

Desert X includes 16 projects dotted around the valley, created by local and international artists.

The arid landscape forms a photogenic backdrop for the installations, and Instagram users have been taken advantage since the event opened on 25 February 2017.

Here is a selection of the best artworks, most of which are on view until 30 April 2017:

The Circle of Land and Sky by Phillip K Smith III

American artist Phillip K Smith III has used mirrored poles to reflect the desert landscape.

The installation is similar to his Quarter Mile Arc at Laguna Beach last December, but here the reflective posts are arranged in a ring and angled slightly outward to create a different effect.

A post shared by Nicole Lenzen (@nicolelenzen) on

Mirage by Doug Aitken

Also employing mirrors, American artist Doug Aitken has built a small house-shaped structure entirely out of shiny surfaces.

The camouflaged building is modelled on a ranch-style suburban home, and produces kaleidoscopic images inside.

A post shared by Nia (@niayates) on

Curves and Zig Zags by Claudia Comte

Berlin-based artist Claudia Comte has erected a freestanding wall outside Palm Desert.

The white structure begins as a zigzag in plan and gradually morphs into a gentle curve at the other end. Its sides are patterned with black stripes that follow the same transformation.

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Hollow Earth by Glenn Kaino

The illusion of a tunnel descending deep into the ground is created by Los Angeles artist Glenn Kaino's contribution to the event.

Built from wood and glass, the illuminated piece is housed in an abandoned shed and visitors can sit on top so it looks like they are hovering over the chasm.

A post shared by Desert X (@_desertx) on

Visible Distance/Second Sight by Jennifer Bolande

Those driving north on the Gene Autry Trail will come across a series of billboards plastered with images of the immediate landscape.

Installed by US artist Jennifer Bolande, each of the photos is intended to line up with the view behind momentarily as the cars speed along the highway.

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One I Call by Sherin Guirguis

Egypt-born Sherin Guirguis has modelled her sculpture on the traditional pigeon towers found throughout the desert villages in her home country.

The hive-like structure is designed to act as "a beacon, a sanctuary and a memorial for the people and communities of the desert who's histories are often dismissed or marginalised".

I Am by Tavares Strachan

Over an area the same size as two American football fields, artist Tavares Strachan from the Bahamas has dug 290 craters and lit them from inside with neon lights.

A visitor sees a landscape of illuminated crevasses, but the holes also spell out "I am" when viewed from above.