It seems like a lofty ambition to set up American art on billboards across America, but the great museums of our nation are up to the challenge. Fifty works of art will be selected by the Art Institute of Chicago, Dallas Museum of Art, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, National Gallery of Art and Whitney Museum of American Art in New York for America to vote on. These works of art will then go on display nationally on billboards, bus stations, subways and more to spread the word and culture of American fine art. The project, which will go into effect this August, is being voted on as this is being read.
The idea, while brilliant, is not original. Art Everywhere’s site says in 2013 the UK did the same thing, and had enough success to do it again this Summer. Out of the fifty selected by voters, there are over a hundred pieces available for voting with a broad variety of style, subject matter, and relevance. Stories from the Bible can be seen, scenes from the dustbowl, and there’s even a picture of Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck fishing. In their own words, Art Everywhere tells a story…
All in all, the 100 works in Art Everywhere US bring us face-to-face with the story of our nation, told by the visionaries who captured our essence at the time they lived and worked, and who to this day compel us to find our place in the evolving story of America. From a stained glass window to a prairie quilt, the two-dimensional artworks in this wide-ranging selection invite reflection on the vernacular of American art, from high art to the everyday, from East to West, and from our origins to the present moment.
Some pieces in the gallery are undoubtedly iconic and will be a shoo-in for a debut on America’s advertising boards. American Gothic, the painting with the old farming couple has already been featured in a good deal of advertising, as well as Andy Warhol’s Campbell’s Soup. While they most likely will win, it’d be nice to see some lesser known pieces get showcased to further propel an interest in American arts, which is one of the goals in doing this.
In addition to making the urban landscape a little prettier, Art Everywhere’s main goal is to create a buzz about art and inspire a nation to visit their local museums. In doing this, they hope to inspire the next generation of young artists, as well as show the urgency in increasing funding to creative studies in schools.
You can vote here.