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New York City Billboards to Display Pride and Gratitude for Frontline Workers

New York City Billboards to Display Pride and Gratitude for Frontline Workers

Starting today in New York City, nearly 1,800 digital billboards and screens across all five boroughs will begin displaying messages of public safety, gratitude, pride, and solidarity with essential workers.

The project will radiate out from New York City's iconic Times Square, and reach all five boroughs through 1,774 LinkNYC kiosks and Silvercast billboards above the Lincoln Tunnel, all digital spaces donated to the project.

"This citywide PSA campaign is an incredible opportunity for artists to communicate the pride and overwhelming gratitude we all feel for our health care and essential workers here in Times Square and across all five boroughs of New York," said Jean Cooney, Times Square Arts Director. "As it has so often in the past during moments of crisis or celebration, Times Square will channel the spirit of the city to the country and to the world," added Times Square Alliance President Tim Tompkins.

The expansive campaign is the result of a partnership between New York City museum Poster House and Times Square Arts, the public art program of the Times Square Alliance. The initiative will roll-out in two phases. First with graphic designers rallied by Print Magazine in collaboration with Poster House, then with contemporary artists in collaboration with For Freedoms and Times Square Arts.

The cultural organizations merged plans to produce digital PSA campaigns, bringing together their respective artistic and design communities and combining resources to reach as many New Yorkers as possible.

"With people all over New York banding together to combat this disease and support those on the front lines, it was only natural for New York organizations to partner in that same spirit, bringing together the power of mass communication and public art, then magnifying it with our gratitude," said Poster House Director Julia Knight.

The campaign will reach New Yorkers on their essential outings, and especially those on the front line of the crisis - doctors and nurses, public transportation personnel, grocery store employees, delivery staff, and restaurant workers, and more - whose work is sustaining the city.

Whether included as part of the landscape of New York by photojournalists and video crews reporting on the pandemic or shared on social media, the PSAs will communicate New York's resilience and solidarity, bringing the campaign to a global digital audience.

"Posters are designed first and foremost to convey messages. To catch viewers' eyes, to draw those eyes into information and often demand action," said Steven Heller, co-Editorial Director at Print Magazine. "These particular public service announcements serve another goal. They are celebrations of the first responders and myriad essential workers who courageously enable the city function."

*Participating artists include Ola Baldych, Seymour Chwast, Pablo Delcan, Matt Dorfman, Milton Glaser, Jessica Hische, Joe Hollier, Mirko Ilić, Maira Kalman, Ross MacDonald, Bobby Martin and Jennifer Kinon, Richard McGuire, Debbie Millman, Emily Oberman, Gemma O'Brien, Edel Rodriguez, Paul Sahre, Paula Scher, Klaas Verplancke, Strick&Williams and Zipeng Zhu.

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