LocationFairlie-Poplar District, Atlanta, GA
For a week in October 2014, Second Story partnered with curators at the Goat Farm Arts Center to transform a Dumpster into public art. The installation lured passersby into an ongoing narrative about the disposability of modern messaging and explored new manifestations for social media.
The way we broadcast messages has changed. In quiet commune with our personal devices, billions of data bits spring forth from our fingertips, quietly cross the vast “social media landscape,” and find their way to our followers. Scrolling through an endless sea of ephemeral status posts, we start to wonder if our compass is steering us toward social isolation.
For one week in downtown Atlanta, Second Story explored a radically different interface for social media: a Dumpster filled with more than 100 illuminated blocks inscribed with words and emoji. The installation lived on Broad Street, a historic strip trafficked by students, office workers, and the impoverished. Here, anyone could use the pop-up forum to craft a personal message and share it with the public.
#Trashtag contributed both a physical and a digital spectacle to Elevate 2014, a weeklong series of city-sponsored installations and performances that activated underused streets through artistic experiences worth exploring. The event’s theme, “social city,” inspired the studio to create a space to post on social media by way of public performance.
The Dumpster not only collected messages, it amplified them. People placed their words on a physical input box and pressed an oversized button to tweet their message on the Dumpster’s personal account: @TrashTagATL.
#Trashtag created a vibrant social media landscape rooted in an unlikely space. Strangers laughed together as they discovered hidden phrases on the walls of words, and conversations flowed and shifted around the Dumpster, itself a symbol of change and renewal.
Press & AwardsCommunicator Awards, Gold Award of Excellence, Content & Marketing: Co-Creation, May 2016Communicator Awards, Gold Award of Excellence, Content & Marketing: Community Building & Engagement, May 2016Webby Awards, Official Honoree, Social: Experimental & Innovation, April 2016Interaction Awards, Finalist, Expressing, November 2015HOW International Design Awards, Merit, Kiosks/Interactive Exhibits, November 2015Red Dot Award: Communication Design, Winner, Spatial Installation, August 2015SEGD Global Design Awards, Honor Award, Public Installation - Urban & Civic, June 2015
How refreshing to see great design thrown in a dumpster! This is smart on several levels: getting great visibility out of a cheap space and low-cost materials, but also using a dumpster to talk about our throwaway messaging habits. This is a really fresh idea that would be almost impossible to pass by without engaging with it in some way. To me this should be an inspiration to student designers, as it shows how you can do a lot with a small budget and a good idea.SEGD Global Design Awards, Sylvia Harris Award, June 2015
Fabulous concept with engaging interactivity that in many ways transforms a solitary act into a communal experience.Part of SapientRazorfish /© 2017 Second Story, Inc.