Digital Graffiti 2013

One-of-a-Kind, State-of-the-Art Extravaganza

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Ocean Reef Resorts likes to keep our welcomed rental guests aware of exciting cultural events, festivals, art shows and concerts that take place here in South Walton and all along The Emerald Coast. One of the most exciting events taking place in 2013 is Digital Graffiti. This one of a kind, state of the art extravaganza debuted in 2007 and has become a unique, exotic annual South Walton tradition. Digital Graffiti is the vivid visual celebration of art, technology and the architecture of Alys Beach, which is located on Scenic Highway 30A right next to our Searcrest Beach Real Estate office.

Digital Graffiti 2013


Digital Graffiti is a celebration of computer generated projections of art that are displayed on the stark white walls of Alys Beach, which provides a ideal canvas. This colorful new art form, also known as Urban Projection as well as Photon Bombing, is changing the way artists create and display multiple images. The result is high tech and decidedly 21st century. What started as an innovative new trend has now become an exciting field of artistic imagery. A myriad of images are designed by graphic artists for projection on blank walls with multicolored, animated illustrations that vibrate and glow as they are being displayed. The result is other worldly mix of animated lighting that hints to a blend of Disney’s famous movie “Fantasia” and psychedelic of disco balls. Digital Graffit was founded by a web guru named Mike Ragsdale when he decided to combine technology, art and architecture as a form of mixed medium. Digital artists create original masterpieces that are computer enhanced for ethereal viewing. Since the event’s premier in 2007, this annual event has attracted thousands of fortunate visitors who stroll around the village after dark to view an incredible village wide production. This art form has rapidly flourished in a short period of time and many of the displays have even become interactive. Visiting guests can be filmed as participants and then transformed into beautiful, surreal imagery on the town walls as modernistic, moving murals. The event is an international sensation for digital artists who vie for cash prizes that are awarded by a jury of judges each year. During the event the whole village lights up with visual displays projected upon walls, towers, roof tops, court yards, palm trees, pools and even some of the guests themselves. The images seem to come alive and meld one into the other in a manner that is truly mesmerizing.

Alys Beach Event


For the Digital Graffiti 2013, 200 submissions were received from tech artists around the world including such places as Australia, Brazil, Cambodia, Canada, England, France, Germany, India, Iran, Ireland, Japan, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Serbia, Spain, Sweden, Taiwan, Ukraine and of course, USA.  This group of submissions was narrowed down to twenty-three finalists who were named to compete for $10,000 in cash prizes and eighteen of the finalists are from the US. Locals will be cheering for Shane Sauer from Destin who has named his piece “Permanent Expression” and he hopes it leaves this same kind of impression on the judges!  Awards will be granted for the following categories: Best of the Show; Curator's Choice; Most Innovative, Best Animated; Most Experimental and Best in Florida Homegrown. 

After Digital Graffiti was introduced in Alys Beach, USA Today described it as a village where painters are welcomed “with open arms and white walls, but with projectors and lap tops rather than spray cans.” It has garnered increased fame both locally, nationally and now internationally.  This vivid visual event was displayed on a giant screen on Time Square in New York, CNN sent a crew to film the event for their “Edge of Discovery” series and most recently it was featured on popular Jimmy Kimmel's late night talk show televised by ABC.


Besides the village buildings being lighted up with a moving disco ball effect, up lighted palm trees are also aglow. Much of this South Walton event occurs around the Alys Beach community swimming pool known as Caliza. The architecture of this pool plaza looks like it is right out of a Lawrence of Arabia movie complete with beaded open air cabanas and opulent outdoor living areas. The combo of lighted palms, animated multicolored lights and the glowing pool transports you into a fantasy world. 

Digital Graffiti kicks off on Friday, June 7th with a gallery stroll allowing guests to meet the featured artists at the salon styled setting of The Fonville Press. A casual cash bar will also be set up at the Caliza Pool where the traditional pool side party will be held the following evening,  at 6 pm on Saturday, June 8th.  This main event starts with a “Meet me at the Red Carpet” gala sponsored by VIE Magazine. It will run from 6:00 until 8:30 pm when the gates open to the magical, digitally lighted world of Alys Beach on this very special evening. Tickets for Friday night are $50 for adults and $20 for children twelve years of age or younger. Tickets for the main visual extravaganza are $100 for adults. Special commemorative T shirts will be provided free of charge for both occasions. Ticket reservations can be made at digitalgraffiti.com and those interested in attending are strongly encouraged to act soon since a sellout is anticipated.

At Ocean Reef Resorts, we have lots of fine South Walton vacation rentals nearby so be sure to contact us soon to let us help you accommodate your needs. It is always our great pleasure to do so. If you're able to make it down for this event, you will be treating your family to a vivid magical memory they will never forget!