The World’s Largest Animated GIF

BeakingModern — You’ve probably heard of graffiti before, but have you ever heard of GIF-iti? I hadn’t either until I came across this YouTube video from Atmosphere retweeted on Twitter. Thanks Slug!

atmosphere largest gif ever

INSA and Ballantine’s

It’s a video showing UK born, self-styled Artist/Graffiti fetishist INSA going much larger than he’s ever gone before in his GIF-ITI art form. INSA and a crew of painters are in Rio De Janeiro for the fourth installment of Ballantine’s StayTrue Stories. Their mission? Paint the worlds largest animated gif.

cycle of futility insa largest gif ever

Personally I have never heard of Ballantine’s, or INSA for that matter, but after watching the video, I was glad to know who INSA is. Apparently Ballantine’s is a scotch whiskey company. I enjoy that a whiskey company has a very beautiful site dedicated to people staying true to themselves. I’m not a drinker, so I can’t really relate to their product, but I’m also a hip hop artist, so graffiti is definitely appealing to me, as is being an Internet nerd and GIF-ITI guy. After this kind of cool viral video marketing, Ballantine’s is hoping everyone will know their label. Not bad advertising if you ask me.

ballantine's stay true stories largest gif ever

I do like the stay true to yourself attitude. How else can one create art on such a massive scale? You must stay true to yourself above all else. INSA went out with a team of 20 people to paint a giant 14,379 square meters image four different times, so that it could be photographed by a satellite flying overhead. This had to have been an overwhelming task, especially with only 20 people painting, but through rain and shine, they got it done. The finished piece is really something to see. If you watch till the end of the video it says it took over 500 working hours to get this done.

“The need to be creative, the need to kind of explore ideas is a necessity, but to take away that would be to take away everything.” – INSA.

INSA sounds like a really interesting character. I would love to hang out with him for an evening and paint the town red, so to speak. If you want to check out his work, take a look at his website, and here’s a quick bio from the end of the YouTube description. He also has a Twitter account here you can follow, and he’s on Instagram. There was also an interesting article about INSA on They even have an app over on for viewing his walls as animations. It’s currently only available for Apple iOS. Hopefully an Android version will be out soon, but who knows.

Shanghai gif INSA

I would like to end with a quote from the YouTube video description:

“Staying True to his genesis as an artist but with a passion for experimentation and innovation, London based INSA is best known for creating ground-breaking ‘GIF-ITI’: amazing animations of his graffiti designs which culminate in looped GIFs – an innovative and labour-intensive process which requires him to repaint a design by hand many times, with each image changing slightly each time, before combining them to create a final GIF. INSA’s work has been displayed around the world, both at street level and in high profile exhibitions and media, including within London’s Victoria & Albert Museum and Tate Britain.”

For BMod, I’m .

All screenshots:  courtesy of insaland

Mat Lee

Author: Mat Lee

Based in Kalispell, MT, Mat Lee is a senior contributor at He writes hip hop, makes podcasts, and dabbles in gaming in his spare time. Follow Mat Lee on Twitter, Google+, and Facebook.

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