Janina Williams: Visual Artist Biography
Janina Williams was born in Germany in 1982 and has been interested in Art from a very young age. She has lived in Germany and London for many years and is now living in New York City.
Janina received her MA & PGCE from Goldsmiths University London. She worked at Christies for several years and was heading the Art Department for a London based educational establishment where she created and implemented a highly creative Arts curriculum. In 2008 she joined a UK/Latin American Street Art collective and produced an impressive collaborative piece which was hung in Christies Auction rooms and also exhibited in France at a crumbling chateau in the Ardeche. She exhibited in many London galleries and Brighton in the UK where her work was shown at the Great Escape Music Festival-www.fitzrovianoir.com. She is currently represented by Laguna Art in California and Hoboken Arts in New Jersey, https://hobokenarts.com/collections/janina-williams.
Janina is an experienced visual artist as well as educator and designs art workshops for Paul Robeson Galleries in the Greater New York area. Paul Robeson Galleries are dedicated to an urban mission with an activist approach. Janina has over 10 years experience teaching art to toddlers, children, teens, adults and her current role also enables her to deliver therapeutic arts to community groups and audiences not having ready access to the arts such as people in health care, retirement and correction facilities. Her natural educational approach and creative mind bring out the best in the people she educates. The artist works in acrylics, watercolors, oils, mixed media & digital art. She is currently working on a new body of work which is a mixture of photography, watercolor, acrylic and collaging techniques. Examples of her work can be seen on the artists website- http://www.janinawilliamsart.com. Her favorite quote is by artist Bruce Conner: ‘I am, an artist, an anti-artist, a romantic, a realist, a post modernist, a beatnik, subtle, confrontational, accessible, obscure, spiritual, profane, IT’S ALL TRUE.’
Her latest show can currently be seen in Manhattan. “Choose Life, Love and You” explores the themes of life and love by addressing current world issues such as processed foods, motherhood & childhood. With this show Janina wants to share with you an honest and raw piece of herself. According to the artist the ideas about the exhibition title are easily explained. “I choose love to any given situation that tempts me to follow fear & this helps to shed light on the darkness but ultimately brings joy to the surface. You only ever have two choices and they either are love or fear. Choose love and don’t let fear play against your playful heart !” Janina’s works are highly luminous and visually entertaining with the intention to educate, provoke and inspire and of course to simply enjoy as well as shedding light on themes that are often in desperate need of illumination. Her work is a reminder to be grateful and to celebrate how uniquely funny, sad, frightening and wonderfully strange life can be if you just embrace the rollercoaster ride. Her work is also to never stop dreaming and imagining.
Janina Williams’ work expresses life in modern cultures and her focus is to combine photography/digital art, acrylic, and watercolor with collaging techniques to create psychedelic dreamscapes that reference situations or places experienced from reality and encourages to make personal associations. Her aim is to maintain a link to her older, more abstract pieces of work by conveying a similar message, which is to let the viewer enter a visual journey that is unfamiliar, yet somehow reminds them of their own world by incorporating certain elements that help them to make connections in a world that is alien, humorous, innocent, obscure and dizzying all at once. The artists more recent pieces embraces some of the characteristics of Dada collages and assemblages in its attempt to provoke a reaction in the viewer. As Dadaism was an art movement that emerged in Zürich, Switzerland during the tumultuous times leading up to the first World War we can draw certain parallels to Janina’s work. The Dadaists were concerned with bringing public awareness of issues such as nationalistic attitudes through the use of ridicule and irony. The photographic inspiration for her work is primarily taken from the places she visits or has lived which is currently New York City. Anything that captures her attention and interest is documented photographically to enable her to select and manipulate the most suitable images for a given project. Obscure patterns and vivid colors are catching the viewers attention as well as creatures/characters/shapes that are reminiscent of animals/objects/symbols they are familiar with but presented in an abstract, sometimes cartoon or manga like style. Janina’s artwork embodies a wide influence of art movements including Expressionism, Art Nouveau, Art of the Sixties/Psychedelic Art, and Urban/Street Art.