RECLAIM PUBLIC SPACE!
An NYC outdoor advertising investigation
nowHERE x Superchief Gallery Brooklyn is proud to present “OUROBOROS: Reclaim Public Space”, a group exhibition in the form of an outdoor advertising takeover curated by Cleo Barnett.
Part of a larger historical movement of ad takeovers, OUROBOROS is one example how to interrupt the outdoor advertising industry. Come check out the show, pick up your own key to unlock advertising spaces and do it yourself!
OUROBOROS is an exhibition that encompasses multiple challenges and lines of questioning explored by independent curator Cleo Barnett in collaboration with nowHERE and Superchief Gallery: What role does street art play in a society where advertising is prolific within our visual landscape? What ways can white privilege be used to interrupt and subvert capitalistic systems? How does symbology and mythology connect us globally and throughout time? Why does both the content and scale of outdoor advertising go unquestioned in its domination of our public spaces?
For this exhibition an international selection of artists were given the brief of the Ouroboros or the snake. Barnett proposed mythology and symbology, story telling and the sharing of such myths as not THE answer but rather one alternative to outdoor advertising. The serpent has, since the dawn of time, been represented on every continent as having divine attributes and used as a symbol for exploring mysteries of the unknown.
Over the past 12 months while based from New York, Barnett has been entangled with questions around the role advertising plays in our daily lives and in what capacities this industry is connected to mass surveillance, capitalism and colonialism. Who decides what can and cannot be advertised in public spaces? What laws are in place around outdoor advertising? What sort of relationship does the outdoor advertising industry maintain with the government? How does advertising target specific demographics? How/is outdoor advertising regulated? In what ways does the outdoor advertising industry impact individual self-perception and societal relations? Through a series of artist interviews, research, theory, and physically observing out in the streets, Barnett has been investigating possible answers to these questions.