Zane Bennett Gallery proudly announces “Creating Shape,” an exhibition featuring sculpture from artist Karen Yank. The show opens on May 29th at the gallery, 435 South Guadalupe Street, across from the rail station, from 5:00—7:00 pm, and coincides with the Last Friday Art Walk in the Railyard Arts District
Creating Shape: Sculpture by Karen Yank
Creating Shape devotes itself to Karen Yank, represented at Zane Bennett Contemporary Art, known for her successful public projects in New Mexico and beyond. The show features her metal sculptures, highlighting different metals intertwined together to reflect a beauty that can only be found in the organic. These works celebrate both the material and natural beauty of our landscape, and the communication created when these two worlds collide in an artistic meditation.
The show will highlight her “XO” series in particular, where she uses the “XO” symbols to reflect her position as advocate for the people of New York following 9/11.
Her “XO” series began in 2005 at a solo exhibition in Chelsea, NY to show her empathy for the city and people of New York following the attacks. She dedicated the show to the late great Artist, Agnes Martin, a close friend and mentor. As the world remains a difficult place, she has continued this theme for the past decade, and will be n extension of this work at Zane Bennett Contemporary Art.
The circular forms and intersecting lines in her sculptural works are due to their rich thematic reference through history. The circle and cross are one of the earliest symbols seen in human cultural development, dating back to the Stone Age. Circles represent themes of the natural world, as well as Yank’s notion of unity. The “X” reflects transit themes of intersecting, joining, and marking a point in time or space.
Karen Yank’s work and life are synonymous. She creates art because it most closely articulates the life she has found. Yank starts each piece through meditation, and creates from a waking inspiration. These absorbing influences are informed by the idyllic landscape of the San Pedro Mountains, where she lives, and represent the emotional impact she perceives when in their natural setting.
She “strives to express a context that can be understood in a moment, but with layers that can be seen when one pauses. She aspires to reveal an “organic nature with a sense of history in a material that is usually cold and industrial. Every weld and grind mark is an intentional decision.”
Yank attended the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture and received her MFA from the Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers in New Jersey.
Karen Yank, over a span of ten years has been fortunate to create over twenty public sculptures in New Mexico alone. She enjoys working closely with the public in a collaborative fashion to bring together their needs and her vision to create a work that truly meets the concerns of all involved. In the past two years she has installed a 500 foot sculpture in the interchange landscape itself, called the Coors /I-40 Grip Interchange Project, and commissioned by the New Mexico Department of Transportation. The entire interchange project, which also spans to Las Cruces-Mesilla, has won ten national awards to date.