i miss you, neighbor


  • A shared concept with me and Dave Lublin
  • The lead up
    • A simple idea to bring together local strangers and friends. A love letter to those we pass on the street and at the grocery store.
    • It goes without saying that we don't see as many people out and about during the pandemic. One of the more overlooked groups might be those people right in our neighborhoods. Those that we might consider familiar strangers, acquaintances, characters, or even that guy, in our respective neighborhoods.
    • This is not a big gesture. It is a small homage to those minor but important moments we share with those in close proximity - our community.
  • The Idea
    • There are a lot of empty storefronts in New York right now. The above photos I took are from about 16 vacant storefronts in my immediate neighborhood.
    • I want to put a TV and a camera in 2 neighborhood vacant storefronts and connect them via videocall (Zoom, Google Meet, etc).
    • Each storefront screen would show the camera feed from the other. (i.e. Storefront on 5th ave would show the sidewalk on 7th ave, and vice versa)
    • People passing by could stop to watch the other sidewalk, and maybe have a small moment, a wave, a dance, with someone else who has stopped to watch as well. 
    • There would be simple signage set up under the screen with the text "i miss you, neighbor" and maybe a small plaque with more information.
    • It would run 24/7 for a few days or a week or two depending on the arrangement. I would remotely monitor the setup and come and fix things if they break.
    • Additional:
      • I would also be open to having it be a place where people can leave messages, similar to the recent Brooklyn "Dear 2020" project where people left hopeful postcards on designated fences.
      • In addition to creating small moments for neighbors to connect, this could bring extra attention to specific properties that people are trying to rent. I suspect this could get some decent social media coverage depending on the length of run.
      • I am totally open to expanding this to more areas of the city and finding a way for a larger "group" video call, but I figured I could start small with just 2 storefronts.
  • Next Steps/Where I'm stuck
    • I need willing property managers or storefront owners with appropriate storefronts that they would be willing to donate to this project.
    • I have the equipment, technology plan, and skills to set everything up on my own. 
    • Storefront would ideally have a large unobstructed window to display the screen and signage in. They should absolutely keep their large "for rent" signs up, they might just need to move a bit.
    • Ideally I would also need power, internet (could be in the location or a nearby unit), and permission for access. I would need just the right owner to allow for these things.
    • I don't have the resources to pay for renting these properties for this project, so I would need a property manager that is ok with that arrangement. I'm not sure if there is some issue with insurance or liability that I would need to cover.
    • Some neighbors or people might have security or privacy concerns, and those are totally valid. The intention is to only connect these two locations and not stream anything to any other locations or online. The idea is about the intimacy of the connection, not about getting online voyeurs.
  • Technologies Involved
    • TV Screen (small - 42" to 55")
    • Laptop or small computer
    • Webcam
    • Lighting (for night time visibility)
    • No speakers - silent interaction. Adding speakers makes things difficult from a logistics standpoint and could create unforeseen communication challenges.
  • Logistical thoughts
    • The equipment would be left unattended, so there is some risk of theft if someone sees a TV in front of a window with no metal gate to block it. I'm mostly at peace with the possibility of my own equipment getting stolen, but I'm less comfortable with handling the potential costs of replacing large glass windows or somehow being liable for a break in and other stolen property.
  • Are there other elements that could make this better?
    • Adding audio in the right way would be really nice, especially allowing people to have real conversations with strangers in a safe way.
    • Adding something for posting messages or thoughts to their neighbors would be a sweet addition, but it depends on the location.
  • Diagrams, Images, Photos
i-miss-you-neighbor-idea

Selected Works

Polarizer ArtworkPhysical artwork with linear polarizers

TV TelescopeWatching TV from a mile away

Extruded ScreenFiber optic filament display

You're on TVLive TV face swap

i miss you, neighborConnecting local strangers and friends

Self Destructive BehaviorScreen that slowly breaks itself

Hold TimePersonal photo blitz

Movie Stickers100,000 stickers in a room

7up | Music Lifts You UpCommercial Work

Google | Project Re:BriefCommercial Work

Lexus | Trace Your RoadCommercial Work

IBM | Outthink Hidden ARCommercial Work

Samsung | Liquid CanvasCommercial Work

Color A SoundAnalog/digital Instrument

Fake LoveFormer Experience Design Company

Sonic SculpturesPersonal Projects

street_crtPersonal Projects

Music VideosCollaborative video art

Older WorkPersonal Projects

Older Live Visuals WorkAudiovisual explorations 2006-2016