It’s a mistake to believe that outdoor advertising is a modern concept unknown in ancient times. To say nothing about advertising on the walls of buildings. However it’s a proven fact that elements of advertising can be traces to times immemorial. The earliest announcements were scratched or painted on the walls of caves or rocks. In Ancient Greece and Rome advertising notices were written on wooden boards or engraved on copper plaques.
Closer to our time, we could mention one essential event in 1898 when Dewar’s, manufacturer of alcohol beverages, created first ever outdoor advertising film and projected it on the wall of a building in New York. Dancing figurines attracted rapt attention of people and press. This was a real technological breakthrough.
The first multimedia digital façade was built only in 1996 for the Nasdaq HQ in Times Square, New York. Today similar projects are gaining popularity around the world: take for example the famous “Uniqa” tower in Vienna, “Channel Ginsa” tower in Tokyo, “Wind Tower” in Kamogawa, Japan etc. Media façades have become permanent features in a number of European, American and Asian cities and are considered preferred sites for branding.
Russia tries to keep up the pace. The first media façade was commissioned in Moscow on a Manege Square. But Russia is an unpredictable territory. New rules demand removal of downtown billboards and instead of giant advertising posters on buildings’ walls we may soon see posters with images from Russian history or even portraits of city VIPs. Even walls without windows are planned to be repainted in lively colors but no advertising will be allowed.
The use of media façades for high-profile advertising has a long standing history, was proven by practice in many countries of the world and is only waiting for the modern forms of advertising.
Modern installations of media façades
Each day some new media façade projects appear in modern cities. There are dozens of interesting and successful installations. The multitude of forms and shapes and sizes are breath taking. Apart from outdoor advertising, media façade projects become popular among citizens and authorities alike since they make cities brighter and more attractive, vastly improve architectural quality of buildings.