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Right: Expanded Light Consciousness II, 2022; Left: Untitled (North Star II), 2021.
Photography: Sandra Oviedo

OVERRIDE | A Billboard Project is a citywide collaborative public art initiative between EXPO CHICAGO and the City of Chicago’s Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (DCASE) in collaboration with the Chicago Digital Network to exhibit artwork on all CDN billboards and City Information Panels "CIPs" in the Central Business District from April 3—23, 2023. Participants included both emerging and established artists from Chicago and around the world. Placing artwork within this public context and the broader presentation of billboard advertising, OVERRIDE takes its name from industry terminology referring to the continuation of an outdoor advertising program beyond a contracted period. Fully integrated into the language of advertising and local familiar signage, each of the works included within the OVERRIDE program present the opportunity for local and international artists to intercept and push the boundaries of how visual culture is disseminated in our increasingly image-based environment.

Building upon the City of Chicago and DCASE’s longstanding commitment to public art, OVERRIDE provides EXPO CHICAGO a key opportunity beyond Navy Pier to showcase works by leading international artists in neighborhoods throughout the city.


Untitled (Expansive Light Consciousness II), 2022
Untitled (North Star II), 2021

“Untitled (Expansive Light Consciousness II)", 2022 and “Untitled (North Star II)", 2021 are recent paintings by Rico Gatson. Despite belonging to separate series, both pieces symbolically represent light as a guiding force - a beacon of possibility and hope. Gatson utilizes geometry and pattern to explore ideas of time as it relates to jazz, spirituality, and the black experience. 

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