Imagine being stuck in bumper-to-bumper traffic. The car’s not moving, you’re channel surfing, nothing but ads or news on the radio… Nothing but billboards with advertising — digital and print — on the skyline. But wait… What’s that up ahead? A billboard that looks like a small forest of living bamboo surrounded by a cloud of mist? That will be Urban Air, coming to a Los Angeles freeway near you if artist and creator Stephen Glassman has his way.
Urban Air was born as an artwork in Glassman’s LA studio. The image immediately sparked the interest of key vanguard professionals in related fields – engineering, technology, advertising, planning and business – and an Urban Air development team was formed. Urban Air garnered its first international recognition when it received the 2011 London International Creativity Award. Summit Media – a Los Angeles based, billboard company – then volunteered to lend their support and donate prominent billboards along major LA thoroughfares to provide the launch pad for the first Urban Air prototype.
Glassman wants Urban Air to be a “crack in the skyline”, an opportunity for people stuck in traffic to “look up, see themselves as human, and conceive of what might be”. As an artist he has a history of creating large scale, public art in places as remote as Bali and Pine Bluff Arkansas, and is known for his work in bamboo which he has used as a medium for “drawing in space”. The Kickstarter campaign for Urban Air hopes to raise $100,000 by December 11 to create the first, intelligently engineered, wifi monitored, green billboard. Urban Air is at once a billboard, a work of art, and a quiet call to action and awareness about climate change. Check out this amazing idea, and as Adweek wrote just recently: “Please, for the love of God, throw some money at this guy!”
More information at Kickstarter
IMAGE & TEXT CREDIT | Stephen Glassman