By Mary Tinti
BOSTON — There’s a new digital marquee in Boston, and no, it’s not in the Theatre District. Prominently placed outside the in Boston Convention & Exhibition Center South Boston, this colossal LED billboard features advertisements for all kinds of arts, business, and cultural happenings in the area. But what WGBHArts readers may not know is that it also doubles as a groundbreaking platform on which to showcase the work of some of the region’s best boundary-pushing digital and new media artists (who also happen to be some of the best in the country!).
Thanks to a clever and exciting partnership between the Massachusetts Convention Center Authority and Boston Cyberarts (with funding help from the Massachusetts Cultural Council), artists throughout the state have a chance to be a part of “Art on the Marquee,” a program designed to integrate the arts into a sign system normally relegated for commercial purposes. The initiative (among the first of its kind nationally) has been so successful thus far that those involved are hopeful it will become a model for public art/commercial partnerships of the future.
Because of the sheer size and spectacular brightness of the marquee, the digital artworks on display can be enjoyed both day and night by the tens of thousands of people walking, driving, and/or working in this part of the city (and can be seen from up to a half a mile away). Each call for submissions has been a little different, thus ensuring a plethora of inventive artistic responses. Future calls will likely include collaborations with New England art schools and further explore the range of public media arts best suited to a marquee of this stature.
Please visit the Art on the Marquee website for more information on this innovative partnership, explanations about the artworks currently on display, and the most recent call for participation.
Art on the Marquee website
Massachusetts Convention Center Authority
Masachusetts Cultural Council
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About the AuthorMary Tinti
Mary is a Koch Curatorial Fellow at the DeCordova Sculpture Park and Museum. On her blog, Dress For Sports, she says, "I love innovative public art, creative design, and unique intersections of architecture, sculpture, and installation. And I love stumbling upon cool collisions of art and everyday life." Mary has a Ph.D. in art history from Rutgers University.