All across the US this summer, paintings by American artists will replace advertisements for the widgets you probably don’t need anyway. The initiative, called Art Everywhere, is a coordinated effort between five of the country’s most prestigious museums–the Art Institute of Chicago, the Dallas Museum of Art, LACMA, the National Gallery of Art, and the Whitney Museum of American Art–aimed at increasing people’s general awareness of fine art. All around the country, 50,000 billboards that normally try to sell something will be transformed into art.
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What’s the Big Idea?
The frequency with which Americans attend fine arts museums is in decline. Surveys show that while 80% of Americans went to a fast food restaurant last week, only 20% attended a gallery or museum last year. For the Art Everywhere project, online voting has narrowed down a large list of paintings to 50 pieces which will be plastered across the country. “I think part of the idea behind the whole project is to put art in unexpected places and encourage those double-takes,” says Jeff Levine, the Whitney Museum’s chief communications officer. See which paintings were in the running here.