Art California Exploring Palm Springs Photography

Desert X – Mirage in Palm Springs

Doug Aitken’s MIRAGE is an art installation in Palm Springs. It’s part of the Desert X biennial exhibition in the Coachella Valley. Desert X first took place in the spring of 2017. Artists were invited to create installations that reflect the unique landscape of the desert. A 2019 exhibition is planned to open in February 2019.

Back to the MIRAGE house. Unfortunately, the art installation will be demolished this month and is no longer available to visit. Now, if you are fast and are able to hike uphill, you can catch a glimpse from the Tram Way road in Palm Springs. Park at the Palm Springs visitor center and hike up the road. From the road you are able to see the MIRAGE. Please don’t trespass on private property!

reflecting the landscape desert x mirage house in palm springs

The MIRAGE is built as a typical American ranch-style family home. Its surface made of reflective mirrors. The mirrors both absorb and reflect the landscape in a unique way, making the MIRAGE seemingly disappear in the landscape.

absorbing the landscape desert x mirage house in palm springs

The interior is also clad in mirrors and endlessly reflects “dreams and aspirations projected onto the America West” (Desert X, Dough Aitken).

interior of the mirage house in palm springs

This was one of the most beautiful installations that I have ever seen and I am sad that the MIRAGE will be demolished soon. However, I am happy to have had the opportunity to wander around while the exhibition was still open earlier this year.

2019 is clearly marked in my calendar as the year to visit all Desert X installations. By the time I heard about this year’s exhibition, most installations were already taken down.

What is your favorite art installation?

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  • disorientedmom
    November 12, 2017 at 4:26 am


  • ishani05
    November 11, 2017 at 2:00 am

    Just Fabulous! I want to see it myself !!

  • Chelsea
    November 10, 2017 at 9:23 pm

    This sounds so cool. I wish I had more time to visit some of these experiences.

  • Courtney Klimka
    November 9, 2017 at 5:06 pm

    Wow, that is the most amazing thing! It truly looks like it disappears into it’s surroundings!

  • michenn (@michennblog)
    November 9, 2017 at 8:53 am

    OMG that’s so cool! And such a great art installation. I totally want to visit!

  • Chuck Vargas
    November 9, 2017 at 5:14 am

    That was cool!! Very interesting since it gives illusion to the picture. Would love to see it on actual

  • KatWalkSF
    November 9, 2017 at 4:48 am

    I’ve heard about this spot…and now I am dying to go there!

  • Cristina Leau
    November 8, 2017 at 11:41 pm

    This is so interesting. I like the mirage effect it gives. Really cool

  • kittyslifestyle
    November 8, 2017 at 8:15 pm

    This place looks amazing and the mirrors all over looks perfect…

  • heraafarooq
    November 8, 2017 at 1:44 pm

    OMG I can’t believe it! A mirage in the middle of desert!! This is such a great piece of art and structure. I am actually sad to know they are demolishing it. I would really wanted to visit it some day.

  • Gingermommy
    November 8, 2017 at 10:31 am

    Wow this is such a neat and different place to visit! It is too bad I won’t be able to see this in person.

  • Kiwi
    November 8, 2017 at 4:58 am

    Wow what a different place .Mirrors all over will definitely give it a mirage effect.

  • confettiandbliss
    November 7, 2017 at 11:22 pm

    Awww…too bad the MIRAGE is being demolished. I would have loved the chance to see it in person. I appreciate being able to view it through your lovely photos. It looks so awesome!

  • GiGi Eats Celebrities
    November 7, 2017 at 4:23 pm

    OMG WHAT?!?!?!?!?! THAT LOOKS SO COOL! I have never been out over there, the drive intimidates me, but seriously, that is super cool! I bet if my husband saw this, he’d want to model our house after it! LOL!

  • jenny at dapperhouse (@dapperhouse)
    November 7, 2017 at 12:55 pm

    That is freaking cool! I had no idea about that exhibit and I would never have been able to see it if it wasn’t for your post!

  • Amber
    November 7, 2017 at 12:11 pm

    This is so cool! I’d love to go here. I wish I were closer so I could check it out.

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