In the Sightlines

The two billboards stand side by side on a building at the corner of Houston Street and Avenue B in New York. They don’t carry logos, but feature grainy black-and-white images of a person in a crowd and a rock guitarist.

The billboards, created by Powell in New York, are for Rheingold beer, and the images were shot by photographer Landon Nordeman. The crowd image was taken during last year’s CMJ Music Marathon; the other, of the band Superdrag, was taken about a week later. (Rheingold was a sponsor of three shows during the marathon.)

The work is part of a guerrilla-marketing effort that aims to relaunch the brand among a younger, hipper crowd, said Neil Powell, president and creative director. According to Powell, on Jan. 13, the agency will put up a snipe on one of the billboards; the snipe will comprise the logo and will also tease the return of the upcoming Miss Rheingold promotional event, which last ran in the 1960s.

“We wanted to go up ‘naked,’ with no branding, to sort of tease the images and also just to sort of give the Lower East Side some beautiful pieces of art,” said Powell, noting that the relaunch in part seeks “to associate Rheingold with the spirit of rock ‘n’ roll.”

Powell plans to roll out ads throughout New York’s five boroughs and Long Island in the future.

Rheingold beer is manufactured by The Rheingold Brewing Co.