Art in Ad Places began as a 52-week campaign of replacing advertisements with artwork. Each week in 2017, we partnered with a new artist to install their work at a payphone in New York City. Today, we continue to install new art in payphones throughout the city.
What We Believe
Outdoor advertising is visual pollution.
Outdoor advertising can be psychologically damaging.
Outdoor advertising is pushed on viewers without their consent.
Outdoor advertising marks underutilized venues for other messages.
By replacing advertisements with artwork, Art in Ad Places provides a public service and an alternative vision of our public environment.
We launched in January 2017, installed at least one new poster each week for a year. That series of work is collected in the Art in Ad Places book. As the campaign continues to evolve, you can keep up with our progress on this site, or on Instagram.
New posters will pop up across New York City, primarily on the outside of payphones.
In the spring of 2016, there was a billboard in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. It advertised Brazilian butt lifts. Art in Ad Places co-curator Caroline Caldwell had to look at that ad every single day on the way to work. She hated the message it sent, and how it made her (and undoubtedly others) feel about her body. Art in Ad Places is a response to the belief that money can buy access to eyeballs, no matter the message. It is a small effort to clean up public space: Instead of ads making people feel inadequate, let's fill our lives with art that makes people feel... anything else.
We are a team of artists and fans of art who believe that our public spaces would be better if we got rid of billboards, or replaced their messages with artwork and PSAs.
Caroline Caldwell, co-curator
Artist and writer, whose ad takeovers have gone viral again and again
RJ Rushmore, Co-curator
Writer, curator, arts administrator, and critic, with a focus on public art
Luna Park, Photographer
Preeminent photographer of graffiti, street art, and ad takeovers, librarian, and author
EM, DIGITAL MEDIA ADVISOR
Social media expert and great cook