The Canadian government recently funded an art piece that looks like smog surrounding an empty box. This new sculpture was opened at the U.S.-Canada border crossing near Vancouver, BC. The sculpture, named Non-Sign II, is the project of the Seattle art and architecture firm Lead Pencil Studio. The concept was lead by Lead Pencil Studio’s Annie Han and Daniel Mihalyo and was built using blackened and welded stainless steel rods.
Lead Pencil Studio’s Daniel Mihalyo sheds light on the concept:
Borrowing the effectiveness of billboards to redirect attention away from the landscape… this permanently open aperture between nations works to frame nothing more than a clear view of the changing atmospheric conditions beyond.
A site specific artwork referencing a full-scale highway billboard installed to accompany an expanded US border inspection & customs station along interstate 5 in Blaine, Washington. Borrowing the effectiveness of billboards to redirect attention away from the landscape at-large, this permanently open aperture between nations works to frame nothing more than a clear view of the changing atmospheric conditions beyond – refocusing attention away from the man made environment and altering the presumed functions of signage in general.
“non-sign II’ is an installation by seattle based art collective lead pencil studio located at the canada-US border
near vancouver. the sculpture is made from small stainless steel rods that are assembled together to create the
negative space of a billboard. while most billboards draw attention away from the landscape ‘non-sign II’
frames the landscape, focusing attention back on it. “
This work was created in just under one year and fabricated in six major pieces at the Central District (Seattle) shop of Lead Pencil Studio. Working alongside Lead Pencil Studio were Ian Gill and Greg Lewis who were instrumental as fabrication leads during production and installation.
[Images by Ian Gill courtesy of Lead Pencil Studio via FastcoDesign.com]