This one is subtle, kids, so tune in. Selections from the Modern Landscape is a new work by conceptual artist Kenneth Pietrobono where he uses botanical signage to rename the existing plant life of New York’s Jackson Square Park in the West Village, with words that identify social and cultural dynamics. With this alteration of language, imagery and context he is making the underlying cultural experience more visible in the landscape. With names like “Displacement,” “(Re)Development,” “Pleasure,” “Class Barrier,” and “Loneliness,” Pietrobono aims to create a tranquil environment where visitors can observe the natural environment and reflect on the infrastructure of modern day society. In other words, it is melded into the landscape of the park and you either take notice and contemplate or just go about your day none the wiser. Like I said, it’s subtle, but powerful too. “Jackson Square is a connection point between many neighborhoods, making it an ideal space to highlight how competing ideas in the modern landscape have different meanings to different people,” says Pietrobono. Another recent projects have included, Selections From the National Rose Garden, which is Kenneth’s site and not something government sponsored. It was featured at SCOPE Miami this year where Kenneth himself and his “DOMA” and “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” roses greeted visitors going to and from the fair, in a fully-planted garden. 

The 2012 National Rose Garden Commemorative Plate

honoring the “Super Pac Rose” is one your politically involved mother, with an acute sense of irony, would be proud to hang in her kitchen. Selections from the Modern Landscape  is on view until September 2.