BLINK took over the town of Over-the-Rhine through parts of Covington for four days last weekend. This Festival of Lights was highly hyped and publicized, and we wondered what our readers thought. We asked people to share their thoughts on social media, and the response was mixed.
Many reviewers felt that the BLINK 2022 fell short of previous iterations in 2017 and 2019:
- ” Disappointed. 2017 was great, 2019 was fantastic… 2022 missed the mark. I’m very proud of the artists at Covington who have stayed true to the concept of Blink..art! Otherwise, quite disappointed. — Renée Bunch on Facebook
- “Compared to the previous Blink, Covington seemed diminished in its participation in Blink2022. The 3 main murals only had projectors – no projection mapping – when I was there Saturday night. Traffic was maintained on Madison, which prevented full visualization of the projection mapping of these buildings. Kudos to TANK, Covington PD and the Mother of God community for opening the church for self-guided tours.” —Lisa McCormick on Facebook
- “We have been mixed this year. 2019 was a wonderful year – so many bright screens made it seem like you saw something new everywhere you looked as you strolled through Downtown and OTR. This year, Covington and The Banks were the best spots. Downtown and OTR everything was so spread out and it felt like we could barely see anything as we walked for blocks and blocks. There seemed to be a lot more vendors and fewer stalls. Those stalls that there were were ridiculously crowded. It also feels like the event is too short and that makes it more crowded. Maybe if it was over 2 weekends or a whole week it wouldn’t be so busy every night. The Brent Spence walkways on either side were incredibly crowded. — Stacey Delap on Facebook
There were also talks about the change in leadership among the organizers of the event, namely Brave Berlin, one of the co-founders who was seen as the creative force behind the project. The design agency announced on Facebook in July this year that it was cutting ties with the project due to issues with other partners at BLINK, the Cincinnati regional chamber.
Based on our responses on social media, some felt they noticed the departure throughout the event:
- “This year certainly felt more like a marketed or sponsored event. If you were paying close attention, you could tell the original crew backed off. There were so many untapped opportunities in the Covington area to make the experience more vibrant. The drone show was engaging but also felt very “staged” once the sponsor’s name came up near the end. Glad we went and hope future events will be more art and artist focused. It would have been a more memorable experience to have felt like visiting different light show art galleries instead, as our out of town friends said, “The drone show comes it to advertise some sort of bowel cleansing Metamucil? ‘” – Elise Sebastian on Facebook, referring to the show’s sponsor, Altafiber, flashing its logo using the flying drones at the end of the show.
- “I certainly noticed the absence of Blink’s original co-founders, Brave Berlin. I liked it, but 2017 and 2019 were much better. Loved the drone show and Mother of God and the Urban Oasis at the top of Findlay.” — Amy Myhaver on Facebook
Although reviews reflected mixed feelings among the crowd, many applauded the 10-minute drone show featured on Sky Elements Drone Shows:
- “Loved the drone show!!” —Jeanne Mistler Buring on Facebook
- “I liked it!” —Sarah Melching on Facebook