Really Alternative Exhibition Spaces

Deviating from my usual blog posts about new technology's influence on the Art world, today I would like to talk about alternative exhibition spaces and some of the issues surrounding Marketing escalation.

I've mentioned in the past that the Younger than Jesus crowd has a general disdain for excessive marketing and that we simply do not like being sold to.  We Tivo the shows we want to watch to remove the adds, and we employ as many add-ons as we can install into our web browsers to reduce the amount of online advertising we are subjected to.  We have a certain amount of immunity to advertising, our eyes glaze over and we cease to pay attention to billboards, print adds, junk mail, spam, pop ups, and recently even most viral marketing has become groan worthy.

Some marketing companies like NPA outdoor have been upping the ante by advertising on billboards that are erected without permits.  An intrepid group of artists took it upon themselves this past weekend to appropriate 120 of the over 500 illegal NPA outdoor owned billboards as alternative exhibition spaces.  Some amazing images, and more information about the project Here, and Here. This project is a really interesting look at the debate over public space, and the ubiquity of advertising.


Not to say that there aren't innovative and interesting marketing campaigns out there.  This add, for instance, probably sold more Cat Power and David Bowie songs on Itunes than it did Lincoln MKS's.  (on a side note, if anyone knows where to find the full version of this cover, please post it in the comments) And this one shows how versatile Vimeo is more than it inspires me to buy a Honda Insight.

One thing that all of these projects, and even some of these advertisements point out is that there is still a deep appreciation for art out there, which bodes well for those of us making a living in the art world.

Does this make you think of how you can approach marketing an arts organization differently?

The MoMA recently received some blow back by hiring The Happy Corp to "mashup" their subway advertising campaign.  But were their intentions in the right place?

Let us know what you think.