NorthPark Center’s new Pop Up Project is bringing artistic vision to barricaded storefronts. The Pop Up Project spotlights the work of young and emerging talents who live and work in the area or are represented by area galleries, explains NorthPark art programming manager Taylor Zakarin.
Their creations are printed onto billboard-size vinyl and stretched across storefronts that are undergoing change.
“It’s a great way to promote local artists and to expose people to all kinds of creativity,” she says. “That’s really our mission with all of the art on view. We are always trying to put a new art surprise around every corner.”
Using NorthPark’s tagline as its title, the work portrays couples, kids, a ballet dancer, and other shoppers happily intermingled on a white background with NorthPark experiences, including signature artworks, toy trains, performers, and landscape flora. Ridsdale is an award-winning illustrator who is represented in Dallas by RR&Co.
Across the center near the kinetic Five Hammering Men, Zeke Williams created a quilt-like mural of multicolored patterns and splotches called Athor / Laurentia. Situated between Saint Laurent and Tory Burch, the riot of color references the ancient land mass that comprised Greenland, North America, and part of Scotland before the continents split up and drifted away. Williams is a Dallas-based artist who creates digital works using the gaming app “Noby Noby Boy” and Adobe Illustrator.
The third work faces Northwest Highway on the mall’s exterior wall between Saint Laurent and Tory Burch. Created by Dallas artist Leah Flook, Space Gaze looks like an illustration of a classical conservatory with a glass roof, except it is colored in three shades of pink. The structure shelters bright coral and pink tropical trees and grasses along with lilac dogs that are chomping or menacing the plants. Three industrial-looking vases with thin pipe necks appear unlikely vessels for the plants growing from them.
It’s an unexpected sight as you drive by or traverse the sidewalk.
“We find new ways to activate spaces with young, interesting new art as much as we can,” Zakarin says. “For most NorthPark visitors, all 26 million of them, they may not have seen these artists before.”
Zakarin continues to work with NorthPark brand strategy director Sarah Haemisegger and art coordinator Anna Kern to select the artists for the project, scouring galleries, Instagram, and local universities with M.F.A. students. Stay tuned for more.