Considering outdoor advertising visual pollution, the Art in Ad Places project was meant to offer a glimpse of an alternative streetscape. With Art in Ad Places they provided a temporary relief from the marketing madness that surrounds us each and every day. Initiators Caroline Caldwell and RJ Rushmore felt it unjust that the phone booths were used for advertisements, merely because they were unused. Why not offer something different? Hence fifty-five artists were recruited to each produce an artwork, to be displayed for one week over the period of one year in total.
The project was documented by street art photographer Luna Park and featured on the Vandalog blog, founded by Rushmore and dedicated to street art. The works often referenced the regular use of the art display, aimed at specific brands like Absolut or subtly protesting against the very practice of advertising. Yet others took the opportunity to give a glimpse of New York history, make a point (‘Stop telling women to smile’), or to, for a brief moment, give you a break from reality with bright colours and unique imagery. The artworks are collected in the Art in Ad Places book and accompanied by artist statements along with essays by the initiators.