By Mary Frost
DUMBO — It’s hard to resist a mysterious green door bearing the words “Unlock Me.”
This is what has recently popped up in DUMBO — attached to the outer wall of St. Ann’s Warehouse theater space at Dock Street — and passersby are happy to follow the door’s command.
What lurks behind the door will be revealed in the next paragraphs, so if you don’t want to ruin the surprise, stop reading right here and take a walk down to DUMBO to see it for yourself.
Green Box Project
Upon opening the door, participants find that they have “unlocked step one” of an augmented reality art project sponsored by Beck’s beer called the “Green Box Project.”
Beck’s has commissioned roughly 30 works from artists, musicians and other creatives in seven cities across the U.S. and Europe, and is presenting the work in augmented reality installations that viewers must unlock with iPhones in order to see.
Behind the green door is a code that you scan onto your phone. This will download an app that you can later use to view an art installation by Belgian conceptual sculptor Arne Quinze. Quinze has designed a giant virtual flame for the torch held by the Statute of Liberty.
Called “Rock Strangers,” the 200-foot high digital sculpture was unveiled on top of the flame of the statue on the Fourth of July. On his website, Quinze explains that “Rock Strangers” are “strange objects popping up where you least expect them.”
The door in DUMBO is just one of several in Brooklyn and Manhattan installed by the DUMBO-based Frank Collective as a way to drive people to the virtual installation.
In other cities, including Los Angeles, Miami, London and Rome, the virtual artworks rise above green boxes which appear to be empty until viewed through smartphones.
If you can’t get to one of the green doors, visit Becks.com to download the Key app.