The Way of the Shovel

Designer: Romain Andre, France, and Michael Savona
Category: Graphics

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An aptly interactive art-gallery advertisement

This campaign for MCA Chicago’s exhibition responded to the brief that ‘Every piece of art is a story waiting to be uncovered’. The ads aimed to make the exhibition—which explores contemporary artists’ interests in history, archaeology and archival research—accessible to the general public. Four bus shelter ads placed around Chicago's Loop and a tip-in newspaper advertisement gave users the opportunity to become archaeologists and archive their own histories through the familiar language of lotto scratch-offs. When users scratched off the silver layer, which depicted a shovel artist Mark Dion illustrated for the exhibition catalogue, they revealed local artist Tony Tasset’s colorful portrait of himself dressed as Robert Smithson, as well as an offer for two-for-one admission to the museum.