San José Semaphore – The History

In late 2001, Adobe broke ground on its third office tower – the Almaden Tower – located on the grounds of the company’s world headquarters campus in San José.

As part of Adobe’s commitment to San José, plans were made to include public art as part of the long-term site development.

In 2003, the San José Public Art Program facilitated a process to select an appropriate artist for the project. A Request for Qualifications was transmitted to over 100 new media artists; 44 artists submitted letters of interest and in June 2003 a panel composed of Adobe representatives and internationally-recognized media arts professionals reviewed the artists’ materials and selected a short list for interviews. In July 2003, the panel interviewed four artists and recommended that Ben Rubin be commissioned to design, fabricate and install an artwork for the Almaden Tower.

Ben Rubin is considered a leading American new media artist. He has firmly established himself as an artist who pushes the traditional boundaries between art, science, and technology. Adobe was drawn to Ben’s ability to marry art and technology in a compellingly sculptural manner and at a scale appropriate for an urban city center while inviting active viewer participation.

San José Semaphore began its transmission on August 7, 2006.