Will Pappenheimer
September 12 – December 8, 2012
Zero1 Biennial, 2012
ManifestAR @ ZERO1 Biennial 2012 blog
commissioned by the Samek Gallery, Bucknell University, PA

Launch Parking Lot Decor in Layar app

Parking Lot Decorator

WE ALL KNOW that parking lots are very bland and unappealing. In Silicon Valley, California, there are huge lots around big computer companies so that all the employees can park and go to their super mysterious tech work deep inside. Similar parking lots that surround stores, housing and businesses can be found in towns across America. There is a certain emptiness we feel about these areas, as if they were unimportant or lost. What if we could decorate these parking lots with fantastic color! What if, when you got out of your car you looked around at hundreds of different color panels and then you walked through them on your way to work or to buy stuff at the mall? What if you could put these color panels up yourself and help make these dreary spaces beautiful again?

Now you can, with the Parking Lot Decor App. You choose a color and size for color panel, then you walk around with your phone and click a button to put up a panel. You can see through the panels so people and cars won't be blinded. Visitors to these parking lots will enjoy your choices and you will enjoy theirs.


The colors we use reflect the favorite colors of the semiconductor and software companies of Silicon Valley! When you go to their websites, there is usually a dominant color that matches their logo. Often we find these colors hypnotically soothing; like Adobe red, Cisco blue, Yahoo! purple or Google green. These are special colors we all know, and they represent virtual companies and project a future that is easier and smarter than the one we live in now. So we use them for the Parking Lot Decorator and start to liven up the everyday parking experience.

Parking Lot Decorator is a participatory augmented reality generator that invites the public to creatively address sites that normally escape attention, yet result from important social and economic influences in a given location. The project is a gesture to give the populace access to intervening or retaking these sites. The audience creates an artwork that is both "decorative" and a reference to modernist abstraction, cited in "empty" or abject spaces. It also looks towards a future in which virtual space populates every space and transforms the landscape.

Parking Lot Decorations at Oracle, Redwood City, CA
App for selecting, positioning panels, pictured at Google, Mountainview, CA
Parking Lot Decorations at Market and S 4th Street, Lewisburg, PA