American Artist Brian Kane recently purchased advertising time for four weeks on two digital billboards along interstate freeways in Massachusetts and replaced their loud commercial messages with breathtaking images of nature. Each work corresponded with the surrounding environment, substituting the chunks of landscape that advertising billboards usually block from view.
“The goal is to provide a moment of temporary relief and unexpected beauty during the daily grind of commuting. The piece builds on a body of work which simulates digital experiences in the real world. In this case, simulating the Photoshop Healing Tool to replace or patch over the landscape which is blocked by the billboard,” Kane wrote on his website.
During the day hours, a series of images from the specific location were shown on the display. He replaced the missing background and created a magic dimensional window. A dynamic motion parallax effect occured as the vehicle passed the location.
During the evening hours, high-resolution images of the moon were shown. Synced to the daily phase, people could view the moon despite the effects of urban light pollution. An image of the Milky Way was shown on new moon night.
Kane told The Huffington Post that for his “unvertising” project or a “campaign without a message”, he deliberately chose locations in the Boston metro area known for having the heaviest amounts of traffic. “Commuting is a very high-stress activity for many people, so I think it’s a public service to provide a moment of curiosity and joy for drivers. And there’s no catch, nothing you have to do or buy or remember — just a moment to enjoy,” he noted.
Kane named the campaign “Healing Tool” after a tool of the same name in the Adobe Photoshop software that allows users to correct errors or blemishes in photos.
He explained, “By removing the marketing message from the advertising space, we create an unexpected moment of introspection. People are allowed to interpret an image based on their own experience, and not necessarily with the singular focus of the advertiser’s intent.”
— Greenpeace USA (@greenpeaceusa) July 28, 2015
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