Monday, 4 October 2010

The Shame of the billboards of Venice

One of my favourite applications of computer printing is the ability to produce huge prints, as big as buildings, on weatherproof materials. It is quite common to use this process to reproduce the facade of a building on awnings which are then hung on to scaffolding to hide the work being done behind it and to maintain the external appearance of the building.
Unfortunately this technology is being used instead to hang huge advertisements onto buildings, often partially covering the more tasteful reproduction facade.
The photo above shows the church of San Simeon Piccolo in Venice - the first building you see as you come out of the railway station. You can see that they have gone to the trouble of erecting a reproduction of the building to hide the restoration work which would otherwise be quite an eyesore. On top of this they have applied an  advertisement for Calvin Klein jeans!
There are many much much worse examples of this practice.
I was pleased to read in the Observer this week That Sir Norman Foster, the directors of The British Museum, The V& A and New York's Museum of Modern Art are joining a protest against this practice in Venice. Read the interesting article at:

(photo courtesy Michael Tinkler at Flickr)

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