See Public Art

New Orleans, Louisiana
04.28.2011 | by: Kelly

One of my favorite parts of the trip so far: Writing on Candy Chang’s Before I Die wall (my answer: learn to be present). I’m a sucker for design-for-good projects and have been following Candy‘s work for awhile, so it was really inspiring to see this installation in person. Along with James Reeves, she co-founded the Civic Center, which is dedicated to using design, art and urban planning to make cities more user-friendly and comfortable while engaging the people who live there. On the corner of Marigny and Burgundy streets, they transformed a crumbling, graffiti-covered, dilapidated house into a public, interactive art installation and social experiment. Chalkboard painted wooden boards cover the front of the house and pedestrians and neighbors can use the provided chalk to write what they want to do, see, experience before they die. Someone wipes the slate clean every morning. The house was recently sold, so the chalkboard will come down soon, but Civic Center has plans to recreate the installation in other cities around the world.

Candy also recently partnered with Hypothetical Development to create an imagined, no-boundaries future for an empty store front on Franklin Avenue. Responding to the limited availability of fresh, local food in her neighborhood, Candy designed  the Mobile Cornicopia, a fantasy food truck overflowing with an abundance of fruits and vegetables. A sign of the dream-like grocery fountain hung for a few months on the front of the abandoned building for public view and is now on display at Du Mois Gallery, along with other signs by local artists depicting fanciful futures for neglected buildings in New Orleans.

[Photos: Mobile Cornicopia photo via]

For more photos of New Orleans, check back regularly at the Lincoln-Designtripper site!

[Disclaimer: Ford Motor Company is the paying sponsor of designtripper’s road trip to New Orleans, which also included a Lincoln MKX for the duration of the trip.]

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