Park Pictures: Carolyn Janssen

It’s that time of year again, dear readers! With the change of the seasons comes a new edition of our billboards project, Park Pictures. We’ve been promoting Park Pictures here on Untitled for more than two years now, and we’re still going strong! As you may recall, our Pictures are three “billboards” installed along the paved walking trails, commissioned by the Museum to encourage visitors to explore the art available in the Museum Park. These billboards change regularly to feature new works by different artists, both from North Carolina and elsewhere.

Last spring Anthony Goicolea created three billboards in conjunction with his solo exhibition Alter Ego: A Decade of Work by Anthony Goicolea. This time around we’ve commissioned three works by California-based artist Carolyn Janssen, who completed her master of fine arts degree at UNC–Chapel Hill in spring 2011. Janssen’s works are digitally crafted worlds created by the expert superposition of images from Janssen’s own daily environment, including multiple representations of herself. This consistent layering allows the artist an element of control as she focuses on the process itself. “I used individual objects in the same way I would use a single brushstroke,” Janssen notes, “building each scene mark by mark.” Janssen’s knowledge of art shines through in her works, which are reminiscent of traditional landscape painting as well as the complex scenes of Bosch and Breughel. The images also refer to video game worlds and science fiction tableaux, which keep Janssen’s works rooted in pop culture.

The subject matter of Janssen’s billboards pertains to an imaginary dystopic society populated solely by Amazon-esque women who, the artist notes, “question and commandeer the landscape, engaging in narratives and mini-dramas, in which they build, fight, kill, and rest. At times calm, at times acting in apprehension to a present or past disaster, the figures reflect on a landscape broken, uncertain, and strange.”

This work, made possible by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina, is part of an ongoing series of outdoor art projects, Art Has No Boundaries, commissioned by the NCMA to encourage visitors to actively explore the Museum Park.

One Comment

  1. Posted December 2, 2011 at 7:28 am | Permalink

    We are so excited to invite college students to submit original ideas for the next billboard installation in the spring for a $500 honorarium! The 2/1/12 deadline will allow for billboards to be exhibited during the warm weather months when college students frequent these trails the most. While there will be only three projects chosen, all works will be published through this blog. For more information, visit Please share with college students you know!

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