Modern Billings: Art on Fort Worth Billboards

Billboard like those used by Modern Billings

The Modern Art Museum in Fort Worth, Texas and Los Angeles artist Mark Bradford have been collaborating to bring art outside and make it accessible to people from a variety of socioeconomic backgrounds. A recent Vogue article points out that the timing of Modern Billings couldn’t be more appropriate.

Art from a Distance

Mark Bradford, Modern Billings
Photograph of Mr. LaMarr, selected for Modern Billings by Mark Bradford | Credit: The Modern

The project began in 2018, long before art galleries and museums started shutting their doors to the public as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. A Texas advertising company, Clear Channel Outdoor, agreed to provide the billboards that host the temporary outdoor exhibitions. 

A variety of artists have displayed their work on billboards in the center of Fort Worth. Before the current Bradford exhibition, MFA students had the opportunity to showcase their art. COVID-19 may have cancelled their thesis exhibitions, but they had a chance to reach a wide audience regardless.

Residents of Fort Worth have also had the opportunity to view art outside from their cars. The billboards have doubtless brightened their days of shutdowns and limited outings.

Accessible Art

Katie Ritchie Modern Billings
Corny Dogs, Modern Billings piece by MFA student Katie Ritchie | Credit: The Modern

Along with making art more available to the public during the pandemic, Modern billings is also making art more accessible to people who often have limited exposure to art. Many of the billboard displays are in low-income areas with high minority populations. 

According to a 2017 study by the University of Pennsylvania, in economically disadvantaged neighborhoods “The presence of cultural resources is significantly associated with improved outcomes around health, schooling, and personal security.” 

Modern Billings is just one unique method for bringing the benefits of art to the people who need it most.

See more art news from RedDotBlog: 

About the Author: Mara Blackwood

Mara Blackwood is the executive editor of RedDotBlog

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