Before I Die

by Candy Chang

Before I Die is an interactive public art project that invites people to remember and share what is important to them in public space. The wall of an abandoned house in New Orleans was painted with chalkboard paint and stenciled with a grid of the sentence "Before I die I want to _____." Passersby can use chalk to write directly on the wall. The project transforms neglected spaces into constructive ones where we can learn the hopes and aspirations of the people around us. The project is currently expanding to walls in other cities and growing for years to come.

Read more about the project here »




Candy Chang is a public installation artist, designer, and urban planner working to redefine the ways we use public space to share information important to our neighborhoods and our individual well-being. She is a co-founder of Civic Center, an urban design studio in New Orleans that makes thoughtful public spaces and communication tools to help people navigate and shape their cities. She’s a 2011 TED Senior Fellow and a 2011 Tulane University/Rockefeller Foundation Urban Innovation Challenge Fellow. She holds a B.S. in Architecture, a B.F.A. in Graphic Design, and a Master’s degree in Urban Planning from Columbia University. She was an art director at The New York Times and a design researcher at Nokia, and she has collaborated with community organizations on urban design projects in New York, Nairobi, Vancouver, New Orleans, Johannesburg, and Fairbanks. Her work has been exhibited at the National Design Museum, Koltsovo International Airport, and many humble sidewalks. She believes that one of the greatest things in life is spending time in public places with the people you love. She also believes that these spaces can better serve the people who live, work, and play in them.

Articles in this Issue

From the Editors
Altorf, by Alan Huffman
I Came in Through the Bathroom Window, by Stephanie Hartka
Ode To a Perpetually Packed Suitcase, by Brandi Dawn Henderson
Adventures in House-sitting, by Christopher J. Miles
The Paranormal History of Merchant's House, by Dan Sturges
A Pathetic Exodus, by Jonathan Shipley
Before I Die, by Candy Chang

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