In recent years, a kaleidoscopic net of huge billboards has enveloped the commercial hubs of New York City. The branding of the cityscape has become so ubiquitous, that the colorful, monumental advertisements, looming over the narrow streets, seem to be virtually unnoticed by the passersby. Giant billboards both dominate the urban landscape and blend into the background. Always in the peripheral vision, these ads turn the people moving through the space into passive spectators. The grasp is democratic and compulsory –the outdoor advertisements cannot be turned off and are able to reach a diverse public whose movements through the city momentarily overlap.
The effectiveness of outdoor billboards is juxtaposed with their impermanence; most are replaced after several weeks. The ephemeral nature, massive size and saturated colors of the ads create a fluid cinematic experience for the observer. People inhabiting the space underneath are pulled, unaware, into a staged set, the reality of the street merging with the commercial fantasy of the advertisements. Coming Soon is an exploration of our visual relationship with the branded city centers and the commercial environment we live in.
New York, NY
Natan Dvir (b. 1972, Nahariya) is an Israeli photographer who focuses on the human aspects of political, social and cultural issues. He received his MBA from Tel Aviv University and his MFA in Photography from the School of Visual Arts (NY), after which he became a faculty member at the International Center for Photography (ICP). Natan is based in New York City and photographs around the world represented by Polaris Images agency and Anastasia Photo gallery. His work has been published by numerous international magazines including the New York Times, Newsweek, Wall Street Journal, the Sunday Times, Le Monde, Figaro, Stern, and Corriere Della Sera among others. Natan’s main projects were exhibited in many solo and group exhibitions in the United States, Europe, South America and Israel including the Museum of Fine Arts (Houston), Southeast Museum of Photography (Daytona), Portland Art Museum, Museum of Contemporary Art (Cleveland), Santa Barbara Museum of Art, Blenton Museum of Art (Austin), Blue Sky Gallery (Portland, OR), Anastasia Photo Gallery (New York), Schneider Gallery (Chicago), Houston Center for Photography (Houston), War Photo Museum (Dubrovnik), Museo de Antioquia (Medellin), Christie’s (London), Tel Aviv Museum of Art, and Museum on the Seam (Jerusalem). His work has received recognition wining prizes around the world including the Picture of the Year (POYi), PDN Photo Annual, American Photography, International Photography Award (IPA), New York Photography Festival Award, Critical Mass top 50, Black & White Spider Award, and the Picture of the Year Award in the Israeli press.