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As usual, you are involved in some amazing projects, Stephen! Flows 2 Ways is amazing. I have to make a trip to NYC to see it:) It sounds like the timing of all of this has been serendipitous and I look forward to Urban Air becoming part of our local landscape.
Hope you are all well!
Dear Kickstarter Supporters,
First things first. I want to offer to everyone involved with the Kickstarter campaign my sincere apologies for our long radio silence. It's clear and understandable that going off the grid for so long has sown some feelings of cynicism and distrust in the community. I am happy to declare that your support was not in vain and that Urban Air is alive and strong. I’d like to take this opportunity to
fill you in on where Urban Air has been, what we’re doing now, and to share some exciting news.
In the first months following our successful campaign, we optimistically set sail and braved the expected and unexpected challenges. We grew wiser and stronger, forged ahead, produced and delivered our premiums, and continued to grow the Urban Air team through key partnerships and alliances.
In Fall 2013 we presented Urban Air at SXSW Eco “Place by Design,” which was an honor and a great opportunity. In 2014 Urban Air was invited to the Boston Architects Gallery, the Danish Architecture Centre in Copenhagen, and Stockholm Museum as part of the “Reprogramming the City: Opportunities for Urban Infrastructure” exhibition. Urban Air was chosen to represent Los Angeles in an annual Swiss monograph called Atlas of World Landscape Architecture. These special acknowledgements were in addition to the more than 22,000 articles about Urban Air globally.
Also in 2014 the City of Los Angeles Mayor’s Office of Sustainability joined the team to help bring Urban Air into the world . . . but the timing was comically bad. The morning of our first planning meeting California declared the drought a state of emergency, and understandably the Mayor’s Office could not be seen planting gardens on billboards. At their suggestion we began to explore ways to integrate water issues into the larger Urban Air mission of climate change awareness.
At just this same moment, my studio was approached by the world’s leading builder of green skyscrapers to create an eight-story public sculpture, an environmental homage to the Hudson River in NYC. This artwork was commissioned to complement the entryway and public spaces of a radical new project by rock-star architect Bjarke Ingels. For his North American debut Bjarke designed VIA, an iconic and revolutionary tetrahedron skyscraper at W57th Street on the waterfront. As an artist, to achieve a work of this scale and prominence within this timeframe would prove to consume my entire physical, mental and creative self. For the entirety of the last two years my small studio was wholly dedicated to the creation and production of FLOWS TWO WAYS, and I had to shift everything else, including Urban Air, to a back burner.
The FLOWS installation was recently completed, and the sculpture now lives forever on Manhattan’s west side skyline. VIA was just named “world’s best new building” of 2016, and FLOWS TWO WAYS was celebrated as the most innovative NYC façade work in 50 years. Bjarke Ingels has moved on to Netflix stardom and his firm BIG is designing Google’s new campus.
If you like, you can see FLOWS TWO WAYS here:
FLOWS Vimeo Channel
Which brings us to now.
Stephen Glassman Studio moves into 2017 more committed than ever to Urban Air. With the shocking, cataclysmic shift in our national direction the world needs powerful symbols, ideas and solutions to be alive on the streets. Urban Air is more relevant than ever . . . and we intend to build it.
Of course, we are not the only creatives with this sense of urgency. Venice-based architect David Hertz and his Studio for Environmental Architecture (SEA), reached out to us. SEA has developed the Skysource water generation project, which creates and distributes fresh water from the air for irrigation and drinking – a kind of new urban well. Our common goals and shared aesthetics inspired a collaboration, and a new partnership was formed. Urban Air is now OPEN AIR. OPEN AIR remains the same iconic, transformative symbol, expanded to become also a beacon for water awareness. With this new partnership, Open Air feels inevitable. We are more certain, more excited, more optimistic and stronger than ever.
All of you successfully kick-started this project, and a powerful kick it was. We’ve been silent, but are still humming. We’ve learned a lot about big scale projects these last five years. We are back and more committed than ever. We will not go silent again, and we will not let you down.
Stay tuned . . . .
Below is the article in the LA Times that first reported about the novelty of this idea. I believe the original reporter would find it interesting to hear that it simply vanished.
In a time where our planet needs this message the most.
Wow, to promise such a good thing and then to disappear. That's just evil.
Did you just take the money and run?
Any updates on this project. Did you ever create the mailing list or the website. I see no communication since 2014, neither here nor on Facebook or elsewhere. If the project failed please explain why. I mean 100k are a lot of money, so please explain what happened to it. Thanks in advance!
Is there any media follow up on how this project failed and what happened to the funding? It's important considering and the fawning on blogs that happened during and after the fundraiser.
Update on this project or has it been totally abandoned. If so what is the process for a refund.
Summer's out and fall's almost out. Any update on the $100,000 raised?
Are you holding the funds for the project in escrow? Maybe since it has changed in scope it would be best to refund the money that was pledged 18 months ago...
hi bruce, amer, and mark
sorry i haven't responded - i personally have been in production on some other sculpture projects and have not been spending time on social media. Since SXSW, Urban Air had been engaged in extensive dealings with some powerful partners to expand the project to 10 billboards instead of the just one. There was a lot of prospective production / business and document development to be done, and i can't really go into the details here. I actually have found it frustrating as well and apologize for the silence it generated and any negative feelings that it may have given space for. We have been diligent about meeting all our agreements and premium commitments to our backers, and hopefully will have some exciting news before the summer's out. Thanks for the inquiries - I clearly have to start more regular updates again
Is there a billboard update, or... ?
Status Update? When can we see the Urban Air Billboard?
Sooooo, even after reviewing the FB page, where are the updates? I see the new image on the urbanair.is website, which is neat. Although, I feel you have a responsibility to inform us, the backers to your progress. Please! Some Updates! it has been too long.
Any actual progress to report on the construction of a billboard?
When can I see the Urban Air billboard?
When is the build actually going to happen?
Sorry - I haven't received any of your emails. Urban Air is far from dead - we'll be seeing you once again @ SXSW in a couple weeks. There is huge growth going on - i've been sending updates regularly and posting on fb.
Sorry for the oversight on your usb. As you can see, they went out a while ago. Have you responded to the backers surveys we've sent out? please send me your info (i think i might have it from bsa) and we'll send it right out ... or i can give it to you in Austin!
Hi Stephen, could we get an update on the project? And I've emailed you directly a couple of times but haven't heard anything about getting our flash drive. Is this project dead in the water?
I got my flash drive yesterday :-) Thanks
Hello. Any update on the t-shirts?
Thanks - Jordan
Would you mind terribly giving us an ETA on the flash drives?
Any word on when flash drive rewards will ship? Apologies if I missed this in some update, but shipping estimate was April and it's now July.
really too bad, I can not use the my VIP-tickets.... have a great evening everyone
Check out this article about another interesting use for billboards:
I am very excited about your project and look forward to receiving my billboard bag!
Thanks! - Mark
hi. what´s happening?
How about an update?
looking forward to posting a regular newsletter to keep every informed.
thank you all for your help - we have all created this new community. the possibilities are endless!
This is great. I hope you plan to send updates to the 1565 of us who joined in. I did not ask for a bag or a T-shirt for my pledge but I certainly hope to kept up to speed. Best of luck. Can't wait to see it.
Hope this works out. It'll be cool to see billboards that aren't just ads for some crappy product.
thanks - i'll let them know. i've been invited to do a piece in denver a few times, but have yet to connect.
maybe at the airport?
Congratulations!! looking forward to seeing this In Denver very soon.
That was amazing. What an incredible finish to watch. Congratulations! Can't wait to see this happen in my hometown.
This is great news. This is a great project and hopefully one of many. It was close but makes the success even more rewarding.
really appreciate how much you all wanted to see this Random Act of Beauty happen. means a lot to me, and says alot to the world about the human value of art. So many of you have connected to the piece and found personal meaning in it. So much passion unleashed into the world. That's a success on it's own. I've learned a lot and grown as an artist because of it. Now it's time to build!
Congratulations! I am so happy to see this one make it! I would so adore seeing some of those bamboo billboards up here in Boston... though the cold winters might make that rather difficult.
I am really glad that we made it! This is one that I really wanted to see and I hope catches on in other citys!
You made it! Amazing - way to mobilize and make this happen : )
Yay! So exciting!
woohoo!! pop the champagne corks!!!
THANK YOU ALL!!!!!
Exciting win, Stephen. Congrats!!!
Wow that was close.
its so wonderful seeing faces. thanks everybody
Give it up,man. You won! Time to celebrate.
This project makes me happy : )