(Pic) Look, Enjoy, Think, Like, Don’t Like, Form An Opinion

(Pic) Look, Enjoy, Think, Like, Don’t Like, Form An Opinion

Ariel Hudes shares his thoughts on why illegal public art is OK.

Dan Gould
  • 23 december 2009

As part of a class called Radical Media at Brown University, Ariel Hudes (with the help of Jordan Seiler of the Public Ad Campaign) recently swapped out two phone booth ads with his own artwork.

Hudes shares his thoughts on why this kind of public art is OK:

Why is it ok to take down someone else’s work (/advertisement) and put my work up instead:

The message of this work is not “buy! buy! buy!” it is “look, enjoy, think, like, don’t like, form an opinion.” It engages viewers in a dialogue which advertisements do not. Each piece of art put in a public space, in place of an ad, is an opportunity for viewers to reconnect with the space they inhabit.

I didn’t sign this work:

If this poster were an advertisement for me-as an artist-it would be just as problematic as a conventional, legally paid for ad. Jordan Seiler uses this quote from Lewis Hyde’s The Gift to describe his work: “unlike economic exchange, a gift has no expectation of return.” As a gift to the city, I have no expectation that this work will garner recognition or accolades. It was a very small way to change a very large cityscape. It was perhaps a utopian gesture which has the potential to lead to more concretely efficacious ones.

[via Wooster Collective]


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