- Elizabeth Anderson
- Year of composition: 1996-2001
- Duration: 29:40
- Instrumentation: stereo fixed medium
As the Roman god of time (cyclic and evolving) who possessed a double nature, Janus is perhaps best known for his perceived capacity to see into the future and the past and preside over sets of opposite events such as beginnings and endings, be they cosmic, agrarian, societal or personal. However, Janus had other functions for he was also known as the Roman god of change and transition and he symbolized progress from one state to another, for example young people’s development into adulthood. Further, he represented the middle ground between such opposite conditions as barbarism and civilization.
While inexhaustive, it is this set of qualities, replete with different proportions, that renders Janus as an apt name for a trilogy of acousmatic works that is inspired by the book Owning Your Own Shadow: Understanding the Dark Side of the Psyche (1991) by Jungian analyst and author, Robert A Johnson (Portland, OR, USA, 1921).
The trilogy explores through sound the creation and evolution of psychological opposites and the quest for spiritual wholeness on a human scale, at times relating such activity to the environment, the context for human life.