NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Urban design firm Urban Umbrella took center stage at Design Miami/ 2022, bringing its new Art Activation product to an exhibition organized by Jason Jacques Gallery. Known for its high-caliber curved white sidewalk scaffolding in New York, where it sells the only alternative to traditional scaffolding, Urban Umbrella’s new Art Activation product incorporates elements of its scaffolding for use in creative non-construction uses. Jason Jacques Gallery commissioned the new product as a multi-story structure featuring Finnish ceramic sculptor Kim Simonsson’s Moss People. Green epoxy-coated flocked clay figures are playfully placed above, below and around the City Umbrella, through which visitors can walk.
When Jacques saw Urban Umbrella’s sidewalk scaffolding in New York, where his gallery is located, he knew it had to be included in his exhibition of Simonsson’s work. “When I saw the Urban Umbrella scaffolding on Madison Avenue for the first time,” he exclaimed, “it was like a flash, boom! We’ve featured Kim’s work on a scaffolding installation at Design Miami/ before, so this fit perfectly with an ongoing theme, but it’s elevated. I knew I had to do a fair with them and Kim’s insane green magic was the perfect solution.”
Best known as a design company reimagining scaffolding with beauty and security, this isn’t the first time Urban Umbrella has entered the arenas of art, fashion and events. The company first launched its Art Activation product in New York with WXY Architecture and Uber Eats in 2021 to build elegant canopies that showcase the work of local artists. This past summer, Urban Umbrella’s Art Activation product was also featured by the National Building Museum in Washington, DC, which used the Urban Umbrella system as a vessel for The Playhouse, an interactive, immersive exhibit. Urban Umbrella’s Event Activation product is currently installed in New York at Bank of America’s annual Bryant Park Winter Village. Urban Umbrella has also participated in several seasons of New York Fashion Week and has curated dozens of brand activations in luxury retail stores.
The drive to develop and market scaffold-free products is no accident, says founder and CEO Benjamin Krall. “Over the past year,” he noted, “we’ve been extremely focused on leveraging our unique product and design capabilities to reach new audiences beyond just construction. We saw an opportunity to enter new industries,” he continued, “by transforming our premium scaffold material for creative uses beyond the traditional use case. We are the first company to provide a modular structurally designed product that can be used in the arts, entertainment, fashion and retail sectors.”
While this is not Urban Umbrella’s first Art Activation, it is Urban Umbrella’s first project in Miami, a city where the company hopes to showcase its many products. Kral mentioned that “Urban Umbrella plans to launch its scaffolding product in Miami in 2023. Currently experiencing a significant construction boom and known for its appreciation of aesthetics, we think Miami will be a great city for our products.” Urban Umbrella recently launched in Nashville and Dallas-Ft. Worth, bringing his total number of markets to nine.
Urban Umbrella Art Activation with Jason Jacques Gallery is located at Design Miami/ 2022, booth #G07 and will be on display until December 4th.
Jason Jacques Gallery is an American contemporary art gallery specializing in artists working with clay. Over its thirty-year history, the gallery has made its mark, building museum collections of late 19th-century European art ceramics, and has become renowned for exhibiting some of the most exciting and influential international contemporary ceramic artists. Jason began his career in Europe three decades ago, scouring flea markets and antique shops for stellar items to ship back to American dealers. He returned with a specialty in what he calls the late 19th-century Art Ceramics Renaissance—works by Lucien Lévy-Dürmer, Ernest Chapple, Clément Massier, Georges Hohenschel, and the like.
Urban Umbrella is the designer, patent holder and manufacturer of the only alternative to traditional sidewalk scaffolding approved by the New York City Department of Buildings. In 2009, the company beat out over 260 competitors to win an international city-sponsored design competition aimed at creating a safer, more attractive, pedestrian-oriented alternative to traditional sidewalk scaffolding. In addition to pavement scaffolding and overhead protection, the company also offers canopies and event systems, custom facade mesh, construction fences and level five walls. Urban Umbrella is currently live in nine cities, including recent launches in Nashville and Dallas-Ft. Worth and coming soon to Austin and Montreal. Additional information about Urban Umbrella can be found at https://www.urbanumbrella.com/.