#CombatCovid
April 17–September 30, 2020

Posters have always been an important means of mass communication, especially in times of crisis. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Poster House has teamed up with PRINT Magazine, Times Square Arts, and For Freedoms to launch a citywide public art campaign featuring PSAs and messages of love, gratitude, and solidarity with New York City’s frontline workers. The PSAs can be found throughout New York City on nearly 1,800 digital screens and billboards thanks to partnerships with LinkNYC, Silvercast, Pearl Media, JCDecaux, and Times Square Arts.

When Poster House closed its doors to the public on March 10, we looked for ways to continue our mission to educate and serve the public. Inspired by Steven Heller’s article in PRINT Magazine about posters commissioned during the polio epidemic, Poster House and PRINT asked more than 24 designers to contribute pieces that addressed clear public safety advice, support for our community in New York City, and profound thanks to everyone—doctors, MTA workers, grocery store workers, shippers, food banks, and more—who continue to make the city run through the shutdown.

But to make these PSAs function, they have to be seen. We contacted Out Of Home advertisers who were also feeling the effects of lost income and were willing to donate their screens to us. Silvercast donated an enormous two-sided digital billboard at the Lincoln Tunnel, which we decided to use specifically for messages of gratitude to essential workers coming to resupply and support the city. LinkNYC then offered us their 1,700+ screens in all five boroughs, which meant that New Yorkers could see these PSAs on their necessary outings. JCDecaux brought the first opportunity to take the project to cities outside of New York, with more than 300 screens on bus shelters and newsstands in New York, Boston, and Chicago.

We learned that Times Square Arts was putting together a similar effort, asking artists to contribute PSAs and messages to display on a series of digital billboards in the iconic media center of Manhattan on several gigantic and dynamic screens. Times Square is currently devoid of tourists, but necessary workers still travel through the area. In addition, the media uses Times Square as the world’s window onto New York, and featuring the PSAs in the press functions as another method of distribution. As the project grows to include more designers and venues, we are thrilled to be a part of this effort to give something to New York through the power of posters.

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This PSA project is the result of the dedication and work of the artists who generously donated their talent; the hard work of our peers at Print Magazine, Time Square Arts, and For Freedoms; the digital posters debuted at OOH screens around New York City due to the generous donation of Time Square Alliance, LinkNYC, Silvercast, Pearl Media, and JCDecaux.



Press

Selected Images
type-based poster with stacked words stay strong new york in yellow and white on a pink background
Stay Strong New York, 2020
Ola Baldych
illustrative poster of a man and woman standing six feet apart both saying combat covid-19
6ft., 2020
Seymour Chwast
type-based poster with the red text call a loved one against a white background
Call a Loved One, 2020
Pablo Delcan
type-based poster with the phrase 6 feet in black text repeated on a yellow background
6 Feet is, 2020
Matt Dorfman
illustrative poster by Milton Glaser of the empire state building
Empire, 2020
Milton Glaser
illustrative poster depicting four different scenes happening within four windows
Stay Home, 2020
Jessica Hische
type-based PSA poster that illustrates what six feet apart looks like
6 Feet Means, 2020
Joe Hollier
type-based PSA poster encouraging people to not stop and read the poster but to keep going
Don't Stop to Read This, 2020
Mirko Ilić
illustrative poster of two people facing coronavirus with the words love in the time of corona
Love in the Time of Corona, 2020
Maira Kalman
illustrative poster of a woman looking out of window with a red curtain
Hero, 2020
Masashi Kawamura & Whatever Inc
I ❤ NY, 2020
Jennifer Kinon & Bobby Martin
illustrative poster of the hill of a rollercoaster ride on a sunny blue day
What Goes Up Must Come Down, 2020
John Kudos
illustrative PSA poster on essential workers of an armored hand holding up a fruitful tree that children are picking
Essential, 2020
Ross MacDonald
illustrative poster and outline of hands been washed under running water with the title wash hands
Wash Hands, 2020
Richard McGuire
type-based poster of the words together apart layered over another against a pink background
Together Apart, 2020
Debbie Milliman
type-based PSA poster being whimsical with the word APART
APART, 2020
Emily Oberman & Lorenzo Fanton
Thank you Essential Workers!, 2020
Gemma O'Brien
Illustrational poster of a figure sitting at a table with an empty plate and a hole in their stomach.
Stop Hunger, 2020
David Plunkert
illustrative poster of a nurse with wings standing behind the NYC skyline
New York Loves You, 2020
Edel Rodriguez
photomontage poster of a shopping cart shopping bag and astronaut floating in space
Thank You Grocery Workers, 2020
Paul Sahre
type-based PSA poster of the words you and me over placed over coronavirus particles
You Me, 2020
Paula Scher
illustrative poster of a pair of red chopsticks on a blue background holding a note that says before you point fingers be sure your hands are clean
Clean Hands, 2020
Strick & Williams
illustrative PSA poster of two people playing tennis out of their windows in seperate buildings
Save Lives. Live Safe, 2020
Klaas Verplancke
type-based poster of the word American in two versions of white and blue against a red background
American, 2020
Zipeng Zhu