To see a glimpse of the exhibit through photos and videos, click the YouTube video above

Immersive Van Gogh exhibit opens in Cleveland

The exhibit transforms a former industrial factory into an immersive art experience with projections from 400 images by the 19th century post-impressionist painter, Vincent Van Gogh.

The long awaited Immersive Van Gogh exhibit is set to open in Cleveland on Sept. 22 at the Lighthouse Artspace (850 E. 72nd Street) where it will live until Feb. 6.

Appearing in 20 cities across the United States, the exhibit takes each venue and completely transforms it through the art of Vincent Van Gogh. 

The Dutch artist was just 37 and virtually unknown when he is believed to have taken his own life on July 29, 1890. But in that short time, he created about 2,100 works of art, including pieces like “Starry Night,” “Sunflowers” and a plethora of self-portraits characterized by bold colors and unique brushstrokes that would influence the post-impressionist movement and 20th century art. 

These works, and many others, are all featured in the Immersive Van Gogh exhibits currently popping up around the country.

The Cleveland exhibit takes a dark, drab former factory and brings to life all 500,000 cubic feet of brickwork, steel and columns with projections of swaying sunflowers, twinkling stars and passing clouds.

“It is a completely new artistic genre,” Corey Ross, the exhibit producer, said. “So the first thing that is going to strike you is you’re going to walk into our space — Cleveland was a former factory, industrial space — everything is going to be transformed by the art of Van Gogh.”

Similar to the exhibit seen in season 1, episode 5 of “Emily in Paris,” Immersive Van Gogh was created by the same artist, Massimiliano Siccardi, to allow art fanatics and spectators alike to take a glimpse into the mind of Van Gogh.

“Massimiliano Siccardi is trying to take us inside the mind of Van Gogh,” Ross said. “His departure point from which he created this show was he wanted to imagine what might’ve flashed before Van Gogh’s eyes the moment before he passed away.”

The show consists of 400 images of Van Gogh’s paintings from the greatest museums around the world that are sampled, deconstructed and animated then projected onto every surface area of space for spectators to encounter.

As you move through the exhibit, you are welcome to move at your own pace, sit, stand or walk around the space for the duration of the 35 minute show. 

“It’s kind of a choose your own adventure thing in terms of how you experience the art,” Ross said.

Not only is the exhibit visually stimulating, but you will also be immersed with the music composed and compiled by Luca Longobardi. 

“Siccardi has had a long time collaborator, [a] gentleman named Luca Longobardi, who composes and compiles music,” Ross said. “Some of it is found pieces, some of it is newly composed pieces and that goes along with the show and gives it a lot of emotional oomph and propels the experience to a new level.”

The accompanying playlist is also available on Spotify for guests to revisit or preview before their visit.

The exhibit complies with the COVID-19 guidelines for each city it visits. Each venue is large enough to accommodate guests to move around and social distance, but there is also timed admission to limit the number of people in the space.

“In Cleveland, it will be required that everyone wears masks,” the exhibit producer said. “We have social distancing circles that are projected into the projection on the floor to help people stay apart.”

Given the admission limitations and the popularity of the show, if you are interested in tickets, run, don’t walk to the website to plan your visit. Tickets start at $39.99 for off peak times and $49.99 for peak times.