February 14, 2013  |  Uncategorized

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British artist Tracey Emin (usually known for more difficult & controversial artworks), lit up New York’s Times Square with her neon messages of love like, “You Touch My Soul,” and “Love Is What You Want” across a huge array of digital billboards. Optimistically titled “I Promise To Love You,” the body of work appeared as part of the Times Square Alliance‘s Midnight Moment art billboard project that co-opts digital billboards normally reserved for corporate advertising for artistic use.

Elaborating on what love means to her, Emin told The New Yorker: ““I now don’t think that I’ve ever been in love. I’ve been loved and I think I’ve loved, but I think the times that I’ve been in love it was a desire to possess or want or own. It wasn’t just about a free admission of the feeling of love … I think as you get older, love is a very different emotional feeling to when you were fifteen, or when you were thirty. When you’re fifty, and a woman as well, and you’re going through your menopause, you feel very differently about love and about sex and about lust. What I want now is that warmth, that coziness, affection, trust, all of those kinds of things. I start off with them first, and then work my way, eh, down.” (read the full New Yorker article here)

From the Times Square Alliance:

Tracey Emin’s moving series of neonworks, I Promise To Love You, is comprised of six written love messages animated especially for Midnight Moment.  In this unique moving image, the glowing words—made of neon lights—slowly spell themselves out, as if being written by a ghost or an invisible presence. The gentle electric pulsing of the lettering gradually builds into a powerful potent red, leaving the viewer in no doubt about the power of love. Times Square, famous for its neon lighting displays, is the perfect venue for the premiere for Emin’s animation.  

s[edition], the leading platform used by the world’s most recognized artists to distribute art digitally, has been instrumental in working directly with Emin to bring this project to life.  

Tracey Emin’s art is one of disclosure, using her life events as inspiration for works ranging from painting, drawing, video and installation, to photography, needlework and sculpture.  Emin reveals her hopes, humiliations, failures and successes in candid and, at times, excoriating work that is frequently both tragic and humorous.  Many of her artworks use words, phrases, or handwritten texts, and she once described how ‘it’s my words that actually make my art quite unique.’


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Tracey Emin, I Promise to Love You, February 2013, Midnight Moment;

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