but is it art? posted by

Water-Tag – dirt based advertising hits the streets


Here’s an idea which is either good or bad, depending on how you view the issue of urban advertising in general. A French company has come up with a way to create street ads using nothing more than a stencil, a high power pressure washer and some recycled water.

The idea is to create an ad message with the stencil, lay it on the surface you want to advertise on, and use the water jet to clean up the underlying material. The result is a clear Water-Tag based ad message done as a clean sketch, with the dirt surrounding it making it stand out.


The company, Mint Event, claims that creating ads this way is more ecological, because it only lasts a couple of weeks at most, and it replaces all those nasty paper flyers which can litter the streets after being given out. They have a point. It uses no chemicals, and from the point of view of the public, they get around 1 to 6 minutes viewing time for the ad, as they walk along the sidewalk.


On the one hand you’ve got to admire their inventiveness, and it definitely fits the criteria for an environmentally benevolent system, but on the other hand, do we really want yet more advertising shoved into our faces on every wall and sidewalk paving stone? Probably not.

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