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Next time you’re driving south on Keystone on Indy’s north side, you can’t miss the two large billboards flanking the busy street. They feature murals with saturated colors and a loose, urban/graffiti vibe.
They are striking, artistic, and only subtly an ad.
What’s kind of shocking about them is that they’re advertisements for Pabst Blue Ribbon. I thought they didn’t advertise? I thought that was their thing, their shtick.
Well, it seems as though we’re witnessing the results of an art contest in which Pabst lovers submit art in an attempt to get a year’s worth of PBR and some cash prizes. Well now.
The PBR campaign can be seen on walls, bus benches and wild postings. In some cities, art is on display in bars, with coasters and maps to let drinkers know the locations of the art. These are consumer-created, ‘participatory’ art/ads that were placed where traditional advertisements are not found- probably to help bolster PBR’s ‘non-mainstream’ image. In other cities, it seems like the muralists preferred buildings to billboards, but here’s an interview done with the guys who installed the billboard murals in the Midwest. When PBR decides to advertise, they leave no stone unturned. To see the evolution of PBR’s advertising campaigns, click here.
To see more of the murals on Flickr, click here. Well done, PBR. You’ve won over at least one passer-by. And I don’t even drink beer!