Julia Christensen | Worlds Away

Worlds Away: New Suburban Landscapes

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Walker Art Center,
February 16 - August 17, 2008

Carnegie Museum of Art,
October 4, 2008 - January 18, 2009

Yale School of Architecture
March 2 - May 10, 2009

Because suburbia occupies a dominant presence in so many lives—a place of not only residence but also of work, commerce, worship, education, and leisure—it has become a focal point for competing interests and viewpoints. The suburbs have always been a fertile space for imagining both the best and the worst of modern social life. more

Exhibition Photos

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Essays

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All essays are originally from the companion book for this exhibition, Worlds Away: New Suburban Landscapes. Some essays appear in excerpted form where noted.



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Artists

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Julia Christensen

American, b. 1976, Bardstown, Kentucky; lives and works in Oberlin, Ohio

Julia Christensen watched the local Wal-Mart change locations three times in her hometown of Bardstown—and each time the community had to find a new way to use the old building. This conundrum stuck in her mind, and while she was a graduate student in electronic arts at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, New York, in 2003, she decided to do more research on the reuse of abandoned big box buildings. As part of her ongoing project, Big Box Reuse, Christensen has traveled more than 75,000 miles across the United States in her car to take photographs of reinvented big boxes and interview nearby residents. Her findings have been presented on her Web site () as well as in a video installation, a photographic study, a multimedia presentation, and a forthcoming book from MIT Press. Her dynamic approach to the project comes from her interdisciplinary train- ing in electronic music, performance, and art. She has lectured widely, performed with the Yes Men, and is currently working on a time-based map of New Orleans in which users are allowed to view land uses in the city over a period of several centuries. Ultimately, Christensen hopes that her integrative methodology will spur communities where she presents her Big Box Reuse project to think of creative solutions when big box retailers leave empty buildings in their wake.



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Video

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We asked people to make a video telling us about the suburbs and put it on YouTube. Selected videos are showing in the gallery at the Walker Art Center during the run of the exhibition.

Selected Videos

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Original Submission Call

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Do you live in a suburb? Do you work or go to school in one? What is your experience of the “burbs? ”…

Whether you love them or hate them we’re interested in your thoughts on the phenomenon of the American suburb. We invite you to make a 5-minute video about strip malls, cul-de-sacs, office parks, and green lawns or whatever suburbia means to you. A select number of videos will be chosen to screen as part of the exhibition Worlds Away: New Suburban Landscapes in the Target Gallery from February 15 to May 18, 2008.

To participate, upload your video to YouTube and add the tag “walkerworldsaway” or post it as a response to our video above. We’ll feature all videos on the Walker’s YouTube page. To be considered for gallery screening, entries must be 5 minutes or less and be online by January 18, 2008.



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Lexicon

LexiconHeadline
A
Adaptive Reuse
Alligator
Anchor Store
Asphalt Nation
Auto Park
B
Baby Boomer
Ball Pork
BANANA
Bedroom Community
Big Box
Blandburb
Boomburb
Brownfield
Burbed-out
C
Carchitecture
Category Killer
Centaur
Chain Store
Chameleon
Claritas
Cloverleaf
Cluster
Collector Road
Community Interest Development
Compact Land Use
Crunchy Suburb
Cul-de-sac
Cup-holder Cuisine
Curb Appeal
D
Dead Mall
Deeded Community
Discount Department Store
Disneyfication
Drive-thru
Drive Til You Qualify
Drosscape
Duck
E
Edge City
Edifice Rex
Empty Nester
Ethnoburb
Exurb
F
Family Room
Fast Food
Fast Food Cluster
First Ring
Food Court Druid
G
Garage
Garage Band
Garage Mahal
Gated Community
Greenfield
Greenway
Greyfield
Gridlock
Group Attributes
Growth Machine
H
High Density
Home Office
Home Owner Association
HOV Lane
I
Infill
Inner Ring
L
Landfill
Leapfrog
Lifestyle Commuter
Light Rail
Logo Building
Low Density
LULU
M
Mall Rat
McMansion
Media Room
Megaburb
Megachurch
Megasite
Minivan
Mixed-use Development
Monster Home
N
NASCAR Dad
Nerdistan
New Suburbanism
New Urbanism
NIMBY
Node
No Growth
Noise Barrier
Non-place
NORC
NOTE
O
Office Park
Outer-ring Suburb
Outlet Store
Outparcel
Ozoner
P
Park and Ride
Patio Man
Pedestrian-friendly
Peter Pan Suburb
Picture Window
Pod
Pork Chop
Power Center
Privatopia
Property Owner Association
Q
Quality of Life
R
Ranchburger
Re-anchor
Realtor Mom
Ring Road
Roundabout
S
SLAPP Suit
Slow Growth
Smart Growth
Snout House
Soccer Mom
SOHO
Speed Bump
Sprawl
Sprawl Stress Syndrome
Spread City
Sprinkler City
Starter Castle
Streetcar Suburb
Strip Mall
Subdivision
Suburban Plantation
Superstore
SUV
T
Tank Farm
Technoburb
Telecommute
Terms
Theme Park
Theming
TOAD
Tower Farm
Tract Mansion
Trailer Park
V
Value Retailer
W
Walmartization
Warehouse Club
Weekend Home
Weekend Warrior
White Flight
Wigger
Willow Syndrome
Y
Yea it is That Way
Z
Zillow
Zoomburb


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