Sunday Skywriting: Philadelphian Dave Kyu’s Community Message


Kyu hired skywriters to communicate three messages from five community groups. The text was visible for miles across Philadelphia and South Jersey.

By Matt Skoufalos

If you looked up in the sky on Sunday afternoon and saw more than just clouds, then you participated in the latest work from Philadelphia artist Dave Kyu.

Many of the projects in Kyu’s portfolio have a broad reach and a participatory component, like the time he did everything Facebook told him to for a month, or the Occupy Wall Street signs that he reproduced and distributed throughout the city.

This latest effort is described as “your friendly neighborhood skywriting project,” whereby community groups in Callowhill, Chinatown North, The Eraserhood, The Loft District, and Trestletown collaborated on three messages that would appear in the sky above their neighborhoods.

There was, of course, some spillover into South Jersey, and residents in communities close to the river were able to behold the messages broadcast in the September sky: “Scientia 正义 It Takes a Village,” “When You Wish Upon a Park,” and “STILL HERE.”

The actual flight was coordinated by the GEICO Skytypers, a squadron of vintage WWII aircraft whose pilots release dot-matrix-style smoke printing through a coordinated radio signal. Check out our Storify feed below for eyewitness accounts of the event.

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