If you happen to raise your eyes to the ubiquitous LED billboards in Times Square while you’re trying to push your way past the giant amoeba of tourists, you might see a flashing, building-sized advertisement for Kodak or Pepsi. But there’s more to those corporate images than you think.
Printmaker and photographer Michael Massaia’s latest series, Signals Crossed, uses the aid of moderately long camera exposures to capture “the hidden, chaotic, and, at times, beautiful patterns” in these billboards that slip past our naked eyes. So, what are you not seeing? Meteorite showers. Rippled desert sands. Moon surfaces. Waterfalls.
Massaia is concerned that our evolving urban environments in the Digital Age are full of disorder and overstimulation, and thus have been affecting our natural collective thought processes. After all, we’re still just sophisticated mammals living in a brave new, post-analog world. His Signals Crossed series, which we spotted via Faith Is Torment, creates an eerie streetscape that peels back the ads to reveal our human origins buried beneath the branded messaging.