Blue columns sprout up around the city as if from the ground, like a fungus waiting within a slice of bread, ready to germinate its blue dots across the surface of the map. They come and go according to the demands of advertising, filling in the gaps opportunistically. Their pattern of emergence may resemble the growth of mycelium, but it is economy not ecology that governs their movement, and there is nothing that color blue in the whole of the natural world.

The color is a consequence of economy becoming environment. It reminds me of an example given by N. Katherine Hayles of when noise turns into information: the consistent presence of information around us is so repetitive that it turns into its opposite and flattens into noise; its absence is more notable than the presence of more signs and signals. The gap, the uninterrupted field of blue, cuts through this noise, and thus becomes information. We notice this hole in the economic surface that covers the entire city. If there is nothing this color blue in nature, there is nothing so empty in the city as the monochrome.

Perhaps these monochromes reflect our attention back on ourselves; they do not overtly advertise, incite, or inform. They seem to ask us to consider what we want from them, from their quietude. And maybe all gaps, pauses, breaks, and absences do this as well, causing us to address ourselves when we are no longer so readily solicited. It seems vain to cover over this gap with something just to fill the silence again,
to not let the monochrome ask its questions of us, which are actually our questions.
Not a colorful sculpture, the surface of this monochrome is as topologically flat as its cousins on canvas or linen. Nonetheless the blue paper wrapped around the advertising pillar produces a strange kind of monochrome. The long sheets of blue loop back on themselves, creating a monochrome that has only an upper and lower edge. The monochrome has both a surface and a support as most paintings do, but without a front and a back; these monochromes instead have an inside and an outside; and therefore the public, rather than standing in front of the monochrome, stands around it; or rather it is the monochrome which stands within the audience, which is coming and going across the surface of the city, intermittently addressed to a monochrome that emerges from within it, which is actually a hole, a hole that grows bigger as another blue column goes up.
The columns punctuate the canal rings at regular intervals, stationed at all the major intersections. It is a hot day and too sunny for Amsterdam; I don’t bicycle so I am mostly on foot these days. I follow the curving line of columns in a spiral movement, as if I am circling the hole itself, this growing vortex which has no center, which is actually many vortices opening like eyes, the eyes of a potato, opening everywhere.
Becket Flannery, 2020