If you feel like artsy photos with lyrical, slightly opaque captions are popping up on walls around New York City, it’s not just your imagination. They are there courtesy of stock
photo clearinghouse Shutterstock, which is using the rotating art installations to promote its new high-end brand Offset, which offers imagery from famous photography and artists.
Shutterstock is looking to grow Offset by targeting advertising agencies, digital agencies and other businesses looking for natural photos with a more narrative sensibility, as opposed to posed
To showcase Offset’s premium photography, Shutterstock is creating a living outdoor art gallery that will tour New York City, composed of eye-catching vinyl pieces applied to
exterior walls, appearing at various locales unannounced.
Each photo is paired with a short story or narrative fragment to highlight the narrative possibilities of Offset’s
images; the texts were written by creative individuals from the worlds of music, design, advertising, publishing, fashion, technology, food, etc.
The first and second installations
are currently visible at the corner of Prince Street and Bowery near the New Museum, with creative switching every two weeks until August, when the installation will move to its next location.
Shutterstock seems to favor guerrilla advertising in urban spaces. Last week, to mark the opening of its first international office in Berlin, the company distributed 200 bright red
bicycles with the Shutterstock logo around Berlin’s creative districts, giving them away to random people they met on the street.
Of course, New York City is a natural venue for
guerrilla marketing efforts. Earlier this month, the New York Lottery promoted its new Cash 4 Life game with a young man in elderly makeup, riding a pedi-cab around New York City trailing a giant
green Cash 4 Life lottery ball behind him. The guerrilla component was coordinated with TV spots which showed an elderly man regretting his youthful decision not to buy a lottery ticket