WILDBILLBOARD, 2015 evolved out of my photographic project, flight (proposal for a billboard), 2014. I spent August 2013 as the artist in residence, under the auspices of AIRIE, in Everglades National Park photographing crows and vultures every day. When I returned home to New York City I found that I missed the company of these large birds and I began to imagine what it would be like to encounter them in my day to day environment. I thought about how interdependent we are even though I didn’t see them any longer. I took a series of photographs of billboards in New York, Los Angeles and Miami, and I began to insert their images over the advertising space on the billboards, making them a part of the urban landscape. It seemed to me that introducing wildlife that one doesn’t encounter daily, into the urban environment, created a consciousness of a world greater than the one immediately present to the senses. And I felt this integration was both startling and useful. Useful because it engaged our thoughts about creatures that are not in the urban space but are indirectly impacted all the time by our behavior in urban spaces. WILDBILLBOARD is the realization of one of these images on an actual billboard in Miami. My idea was taken up by AIRIE and funded by the James L. Knight Foundation and Everglades National Park. Later it was decided to include other artist residents in the project of creating billboards in Miami. My image of a vulture, photographed in Everglades National Park, appeared on the first billboard located on I-195 in Miami’s Wynwood district during Art Miami Basel and throughout the month of December, 2015.
A four minute video about the project shot by Art Loft on the occasion of my talk at the Perez Museum can be seen here.