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Art Design

Art in Ad Places: A New Book Collects 52 Public Artworks Installed in Pay Phones Across NYC

February 20, 2018

Kate Sierzputowski

Artwork by Andrea Sonnenberg, all installation images by Luna Park

Artwork by Andrea Sonnenberg, all installation images by Luna Park

Frustrated by the daily bombardment of advertising on the streets of New York City, artist Caroline Caldwell and writer RJ Rushmore decided to produce a project that would dampen the sheer volume of visual marketing strewn throughout their environment. The pair didn’t have the budget to prompt an entire overhaul, but they did have the incentive to construct an intervention that would offer an alternative glimpse to the city’s high volume of print-based advertisements.

For their 2017 project, Art in Ad Places, the pair recruited 55 artists and collectives from across the country to produce 55 works to be temporarily displayed on pay phone booths across New York City. The installations were each presented for a week, and documented by their collaborator, street art photographer Luna Park.

“Pay phones were a perfect choice because they’re disappearing from the streets,” Rushmore told Colossal. “So I’d like to say that our ad takeovers were intended as a swan song for pay phones. Plus, contemporary pay phones serve no real function except to serve advertising, and that feels wrong. Nobody’s using pay phones to make calls, so why do we put up with their ads?”

The 52-week campaign ended in December of last year, however it has recently been compiled into a new book that documents the year-long installation. Art in Ad Places: 52 Week of Public Art Across New York City is available through Rushmore’s street art blog Vandalog and features statements from each artist alongside essays written by the project’s three collaborators. You can see the entire range of poster-sized artworks produced for Art in Ad Places on the project’s website or Instagram.

Bones Not Bombs by Pat Perry

Bones Not Bombs by Pat Perry

My Ad is No Ad by John Fekner

My Ad is No Ad by John Fekner

Artwork by For Freedoms with Hank Willis Thomas

Artwork by For Freedoms with Hank Willis Thomas

"I HATE THE SOUND OF SILENCE" by Cheryl Pope

“I HATE THE SOUND OF SILENCE” by Cheryl Pope

Artwork by Martha Cooper

Artwork by Martha Cooper

The Ecstasy of St Katsuhiro Otomo by Nomi Chi

The Ecstasy of St Katsuhiro Otomo by Nomi Chi

Stop Telling Women to Smile by Tatyana Fazlalizadeh

Stop Telling Women to Smile by Tatyana Fazlalizadeh

Artwork by Louise Chen aka Ouizi

Artwork by Louise Chen aka Ouizi

Blue Lady by Parker Day

Blue Lady by Parker Day

 

 



Art

Amok Island Paints Modern Minimalist Murals of Native Flora and Fauna

February 16, 2018

Laura Staugaitis

Rotterdam, The Netherlands 2017. ‘Zeus faber’ for SOBER WALLS Festival

A native of The Netherlands and now based in Australia, Amok Island depicts flora and fauna that can be found in the locations of his colorful murals. The artist’s distinctive minimal style is reminiscent of recent trends in digital design. However, his analog use of flat fields of color and geometric shapes to interpret the nuanced forms of animals and plants is a fresh take in the current mural scene.

Amok writes on his website that if weren’t an artist, he would be a biologist. He takes many of his own reference photos (including underwater), and titles each mural with the name of the plant or animal. The artist describes his passion for the natural world:

The theme of natural exploration and conservation is a strong and constant undercurrent of Amok Island’s artistic practice. His lifelong fascination with nature and her relationships and history with mankind drive the artist’s obvious appreciation and obsession with his subjects and his urge to direct the attention of his audience to them.

Amok has finished murals in twenty five countries and counting, and also creates smaller paintings, which he sometimes editions as prints. You can see more work on his website, as well as on Facebook and Instagram.

Ravensthorpe, Western Australia 2016. ‘Six Stages of Banksia Baxteri’ (side 2) Commissioned by FORM WA and CBH

Ravensthorpe, Western Australia 2016. ‘Six Stages of Banksia Baxteri’ (side 1) Commissioned by FORM WA and CBH

Ravensthorpe, Western Australia 2016. ‘Six Stages of Banksia Baxteri’ (in progress) Commissioned by FORM WA and CBH

Axolotl, Mexico

Fremantle, Western Australia 2015. ‘Praying Mantis’ for PUBLIC Festival

Port Hedland, Western Australia 2015. ‘Flatback Turtle Hatchling’ commissioned by FORM WA

Amsterdam, The Netherlands 2016. ‘Horse Chestnut’ Commissioned by LTS / Spooker

Claremont, Western Australia 2017. ‘Mushrooms’ commissioned by FORM / Claremont Quarters

North Fremantle, Western Australia 2015. ‘Blue Swimmer Crab’ for UNDERLINE festival

Collaboration with Georgia Hill and Thomas Jackson in Erskineville, Sydney

Surry Hills, Sydney 2017 ‘Mushroom Study’ Commissiones by Canva

 

 



Art

Soaring Murals of Plants on Urban Walls by Mona Caron

February 1, 2018

Laura Staugaitis

Muralist Mona Caron (previously) has continued her worldwide Weeds series, with colorful renderings of humble plants growing ever taller on buildings from Portland and São Paulo to Spain and Taiwan. The San Francisco-based artist often partners with local and international social and environmental movements for climate justice, labor rights, and water rights, and selects plants, both native and invasive, that she finds in the cities where she paints. Caron also integrates tiny details into the main visual elements of her murals:

Several of these murals contain intricate miniature details, invisible from afar. These typically narrate the local history, chronicle the social life of the mural’s immediate surroundings, and visualize future possibility, and are created in a process that incorporates ideas emerging through spontaneous conversations with the artwork’s hosting communities while painting.

Caron regularly shares process videos and photos of completed works on Instagram, and she delves into the narratives behind several of her murals on her website.

Collaboration with Liqan

 

 



Art

Frenetic Animal Murals by Dzia Swirl to Life Across the World

January 4, 2018

Laura Staugaitis

Since we last checked in with Antwerp-based street artist Dzia (previously), the Belgian muralist has been busy adding fauna flair to walls in an increasingly widening swath across the globe. Recent projects have taken him to China, Norway, and Spain. Dzia, who is classically trained with a masters in fine art at the Royal Academy in Antwerp, primarily depicts wild animals — foxes and birds seem to be recurring favorites. His unique style creates a mosaic of colors following the contours of the animal’s form. In his more recent work, Dzia has begun to add tonal shading within each defined area, adding a sense of volume to the well-defined figures. You can follow his work and travels on Instagram.

 

 



Art

Mother Earth and Her Daughter Meet in a Mural by Jess X. Snow

December 20, 2017

Laura Staugaitis

A new mural in Philadelphia by Jess X. Snow depicts two abstracted female figures, one young, and one old, both formed of rippling branches, leaves, flowers, and birds in flight. Entitled “A Daughter Migrates Toward The Mother Earth,” the mural was created with the support of public art nonprofit Mural Arts Philadelphia.

In addition to mural-making, Snow is also a poet, filmmaker, and educator. Snow describes her multi-disciplinary work as exploring “survival, joy, and our relationship to the Earth by amplifying the voices of those who refuse to be defined by borders, heteronormativity, gender, color, legislation and time.” You can follow her work and travels on Instagram and Twitter. Snow also designed a screen print with similar imagery available through Justseeds.

 

 



Art

Fence and Border Interventions by Icy and Sot

December 14, 2017

Christopher Jobson

Responding to issues of border control and the refugee crisis, Iranian artist duo Icy and Sot (previously) created a variety of fence and border interventions. The Brooklyn-based brothers most recently installed a piece outside The Lot Radio in New York, and exhibited several new artworks with Thinkspace Art Gallery for a show titled Human (Nature). You can see more current work here.

 

 



Art

Guerilla Flower Installations on the Streets of NYC by Lewis Miller Design

December 13, 2017

Christopher Jobson

For the last few months New Yorkers have been treated to an unexpected sight during their daily commutes as random trash cans around the city have been converted into overflowing bouquets of colorful flowers. The temporary installations dubbed “Flower Flashes” are the idea of floral designer Lewis Miller Design who utilize a mixture of post-event flowers and fresh stock to create the displays on street corners or around statues, reminding us somewhat of Geoffroy Mottart’s installations in Brussels. You can see more of Lewis Miller’s work on Instagram. (via This Isn’t Happiness)

 

 

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