Innovative animation lights up Borowy Family Children’s Critical Care Tower

Art and technology come together to create a larger-than-life visual experience, created by Castano Group, on the exterior of Baptist Health’s newest building.

Jacksonville, FL

Baptist Health and Wolfson Children’s Hospital, in collaboration with Jacksonville-based content production company Castano Group, present “Reflections of Hope,” a spectacular visual experience on the exterior of the new Borowy Family Children’s Critical Care Tower.

Using a technique called projection mapping, the Castano Group artistically blends three-dimensional animation with live-action video to create a unique visual experience that is projected each night, starting just after sunset. The production sets the scene for Baptist Health’s flagship medical campus. Also, it serves as a reminder to the community of the discovery, inspiration and wondrous achievements that take place there.

This public art display debuts the evening of April 5, 2022, turning the 33 x 88.5-foot reflective panel on the building’s south-facing wall into a mesmerizing series of scenes that capture the imagination. Many of the animated scenes are based upon the themed floors inside the children’s hospital, including seven distinct biomes ranging from underwater to grasslands to outer space.

“Every aspect of the new Borowy Family Children’s Critical Care Tower, including the building’s exterior, was designed to create a healing environment for children,” said Michael D. Aubin, FACHE, president of Wolfson Children’s. “The name of this display captures exactly what it does: reflects the happiness and comfort our team strives to create every day for the children and families we serve. We hope this display allows patients, families and passersby to see health care in a welcoming light.”

“Reflections of Hope” was meticulously designed by the Castano Group’s media architects: Kedgar Volta, co-founder, creative director and design lead; Joseph Provenza, designer; David Bates, animator; and Joash Brunet, co-founder and producer. The concept was to create a positive emotional connection with children and families by bringing the building to life in a unique and joyful way. With themes of wonder, discovery, resilience and fun, this nightly visual display is designed to engage adults and children alike.

“Joy, playfulness and discovery are really big parts of the approachability of a children’s hospital,” said Volta of Castano Group. “So, with ‘Reflections of Hope,’ we aimed to transform the façade of the Borowy Tower into a canvas for the imagination with fantasy-inspired childhood experiences and childlike consciousness. Our goal is to provide a moment of immersion and spark of imagination that will help increase feelings of well-being and healing. We hope it will bring a sense of optimism and wonder to all who encounter it.”

To create the lighted animations for the Borowy Tower, the Castano Group used the architectural blueprints for the building to develop a 3D rendering of its exterior panels. Each pixel of the live video and animated production was mapped to the panels. A 40-thousand lumen projector is used to display the visuals onto the tower each night at sunset, making it look as if it’s coming alive through 3D animation.

“We began working on this project in the summer of 2019, and it’s fascinating to see it finally come together,” said Brunet of Castano Group. “Projection mapping is a unique and technical process that allows us to augment and visually enhance the Borowy Tower with different materials, shapes, patterns and transformations, all inspired by the building’s architecture and aesthetic.

“Reflections of Hope” will continuously play each evening with new sequences, combinations, colors, and randomized patterns. The dynamic display transitions to a new biome every 20 minutes until roughly 10:30 pm, when the display shifts to more subtle “generative animations” inspired by the building architecture. The projection schedule will be adjusted as needed, and plans call for new scenes to be added in the future.

“Infusing art into unexpected places is something that Baptist Health has been doing for many years,” said Michael A. Mayo, DHA, FACHE, president and chief executive officer of Baptist Health. “We know that art has a powerful ability to help the healing process and positively impact the entire community. We are honored to have this eye-catching installation illuminate our new front door to the Baptist Medical Center Jacksonville and Wolfson Children’s Hospital campus. May it light the way towards healing, hope and extraordinary care for our patients and their families.”