Amy Yoes: Modifier

“In all of my work I make use of visual conundrums and illusions. I cultivate moments of clarity that can dissolve into questions about scale, materials, and perception. The pleasure arising from a richness in texture and reflectivity can open a conversation about the meaning of style and ornament. At the moment, I am intrigued by the worldwide gravitation towards geometric abstraction. I see this as a positive resurgence of faith in a poetic language that can be deployed in unique and meaningful ways by artists everywhere. I think we are all linked in ways that are difficult to see from our single vantage points. It is very exciting to see the DNA of my own work linked back in time to those who came before. I also feel affection for others in my circle who are dancing around similar aesthetic questions.

I’m always aware, when photographing my sculpture and installation for documentation purposes, of the possibility of unfolding another artwork out of this image-making process. Experimentation is one of the strongest threads that link me to the New Bauhaus photography school. Representing space in two dimensions is at once flattening and expanding, like a magic trick. The photographic work of the New Bauhaus feels inevitable, as if someone had to arrive at those images. Long after exploring them in school, I found myself engaging in photographic works that build upon the same principles and aesthetics as those pioneers of experimental photography.

My art practice has oscillated between installation, sculpture, and painting, with photography playing a fundamental role. My ongoing series “Grammar Pictures,” which I have been working on for over 20 years, collects street situations that have unexpected compositional vivacity or humor. These aspects sometimes leak into other zones of my creative work. But with pieces such as Modifier, the strategy rests on using sets that I construct. Materials include paper, string, clay, plexiglass, and paint.”

– Amy Yoes