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Immersive Van Gogh art exhibition to open at fairgrounds in January

A spectator in "Beyond Van Gogh," which opens at the Del Mar Fairgrounds in January 2022.
A spectator admires Vincent Van Gogh’s “The Starry Night” in the immersive experience “Beyond Van Gogh,” which will be open at the Del Mar Fairgrounds in January 2022.
(Rodrigo Gaya Villar )

‘Beyond Van Gogh’ has been a smash in Europe and throughout the U.S.

One of the world’s hottest art experiences is coming to the Del Mar Fairgrounds in January.

“Beyond Van Gogh,” an immersive exhibit that allows visitors to walk through empty rooms where Vincent Van Gogh’s paintings are projected all around them, will open Jan. 14, 2022, in the Wyland Center at the fairgrounds. Tickets are now on sale.

The Instagram-friendly exhibition uses digital projection mapping software that animates the paintings of the popular 19th-century Dutch artist so that the images move and swirl around the walls, floors and ceilings and the stars twinkle.

Created in 2020 by Mathieu St-Arnaud and his team at Montreal’s Normal Studio, the exhibit features more than 300 Van Gogh artworks with 500,000 square feet of visual projections and 60,000 frames of video. It also has a recorded symphonic score.

Among the famous paintings featured in “Beyond Van Gogh” are “The Starry Night,” “Sunflowers” and “Café Terrace at Night.”

Visitors walk through the "Beyond Van Gogh" exhibition.
(Rodrigo Gaya Villar )

The three-dimensional art show is one of several immersive Van Gogh exhibitions that have toured the world in recent years. A similar exhibit in Paris sold more than 2 million tickets before the pandemic. “Beyond Van Gogh” made its world premiere on April 15 in Miami. It now has engagements booked in 18 U.S. cities.

The nearest location to see it in 2021 is in Los Angeles, where an engagement will open May 27 in Downtown L.A. Since tickets went on sale in February, all L.A. shows through October are sold out and only limited weekday tickets are still available in November and December.

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The San Diego engagement is open-ended. Tickets will be sold for time slots every 15 minutes from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily. Show producers recommend planning one hour to see the entire exhibition.

San Diego ticket prices are based on whether they’re sold for peak times (Fridays-Sundays and holidays) or off-peak times. Adult ticket prices are $42.99 for off-peak to $52.99 for peak. Tickets for children ages 5 to 15 range from $27.99 to $32.99, and students up to 25 with valid ID, seniors 65 and above and military with ID range from $38.99 to $47.99.

Details can be found online at vangoghsandiego.com.

— Pam Kragen is a reporter for The San Diego Union-Tribune


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