Following up on last month’s installations by Shaniqwa Jarvis, today we have the second half of our collaboration with Medium Tings’ Stephanie Baptist. We invited Baptist to guest curate a series of Art in Ad Places installations because we were inspired by her work providing a platform to artists who are under-recognized in the traditional gallery system.
For this second set of installations, Baptist invited Nydia Blas to contribute two photographs from her series The Girls Who Spun Gold. Blas told us, “I contributed these images to Art in Ad Places because Black girls and women deserve to see complicated representations of themselves.”
Baptist’s selections exemplify how, when we hand over public space to the advertising industry, certain images and ideas end up not making it into public space. The photographs by both Jarvis and Blas fill gaps in our public conversations, as Blas’ statement touches on.
Even behind the scenes at Art in Ad Places, we’ve been thinking about how, despite creating this project about opening up public space, we inevitably have our own curatorial biases steering the ship. The core team comes from a background in street art and graffiti, and we work with a lot of street artists. RJ loves text art, and we’ve had a lot of big bold text. Sure, some work is just going to fit well in this format. But if we want to show a world where public space is for everyone, we have to break out of those boxes. Working with Medium Tings is one way for us to try doing that, and we appreciate Baptist, Blas, and Jarvis for their willingness to join us in this experiment.
Have ideas for other important topics that advertising either ignores or addresses poorly? What ideas should be projected throughout public space? Let us know. Or, better yet, go out there and put up those messages yourself.