Invisible Phonebox - TANK #engage

Geppetto-box Night.jpg
Geppetto-box Night.jpg


Twitter Photo
Twitter Photo

Geppetto-box Night.jpg
Geppetto-box Night.jpg


September 2012, I was commissioned as one of six artists to re-design a public phone-box. 

#engage was ran by TANK Collective and in association with Eircom partnered up with three city festivals Culture Night, Open House and Hard Working Class Heroes 



"......The boxes were once an integral part of the fabric of our streets buy now are invisible, neglected. We want to make them visible and vital once more. This project seeks to re-engage people with the telephone boxes......" 


My concept was to engage the viewer/public back again with the boxes by making them actively search for that one point where the box would become invisible.



Philosopher and fellow Kilkenny man, George Berkeley, once wrote in his pinnacle work "A Essay Towards a new Theory of Vision" (1709)

"My design is to show the manner wherein we perceive by sight the distance, magnitude, and situation of objects.

For distance being a Line directed end-wise to the eye, it projects only one point in the fund of the eye"

As it turns out, Berkeley also lends his name to the Berkeley Library which happens to be the building directly behind this one. 




My one and only work sheet for messuring out the phone box. (Apologies to all architects out there, I'm sure this is the sort of drawings nightmares are made of).


Installation was digitally printed onto vinyl wrapping material and installed by Panoramic Signs (Kilkenny)

Building featured on box, Ussher Library, Trinity College Dublin : designed by McCulloughMulvin Architects (Dublin)



So the technique used to create this illusion is called perspective anamorphosis, first used in the early Renaissance and more commonly seen on chalk drawn street art to make it look like there's a hole in the ground.


I got asked the following a lot - "When did you take the photo on the box when they're was no cars"... There's two answers to this:

1. The photo on the box doesn't exist. It is Impossible to take the exact photo of what is on the box because there is a phonebox in the way... and 2. The photo you see printed on the box is a photoshopped comp of a few photos, which I took in between traffic.


Below are all the sections that got sent to the printers. You many notice things look stretched and skewed. As the viewing angle was a stump on the ground for people to sit on, the phonebox was at an angle to the viewer, which lead to the images also need to be skewed and adjusted for this exact point.

2012 / Digital Vinyl Printing