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From project to projection: Cityscape becomes art canvas

Graphics, Projects | May 1, 2011 | By:

The Urban Screen movement, now showing on public buildings worldwide, debuted in Willimantic, Conn., in February when the city’s architectural surfaces became canvases for art. The Screen Project’s “Love in a Cold Climate” featured video, animation, text and poetry by modern artists projected against architectural canvases from dark until midnight. Finding the material to transform the city into a series of projection screens turned out to be a daunting task, but Studio Productions Inc., Elizabethtown, Ind., offered a fabric solution that made the magic work.

Local business owners agreed to host the screens, but needed something easy to install that would be unobtrusive and allow light in during the daytime hours. Willimantic artists June Bisantz (professor of art at Eastern Connecticut State University) and Harrison Judd, who teamed up to produce The Screen Project series of art exhibitions, wanted the material to feature fidelity of image, transparency and cost effectiveness. Studio Productions proposed Chameleon™, a translucent, lightweight spunbond scrim with a matte surface that holds its shape when hung or stretched. The scrim can be finished with grommets, pole pockets or optional fire retardant, and its installation in Willimantic took minutes. The resulting cinema-quality surface allowed The Screen Project to paint the town with color, light and poetry. The Screen Project has been invited to become a global partner of the Streaming Museum, a New York City organization presenting art in public space and cyberspace on seven continents.

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