Kennedy Yanko is a sculptor whose practice is built upon paradox. Her work addresses how human perception and societal expectation are often in conflict with each other. In constructing her work, Yanko relies upon intuitive systems, often involving physically rigorous methods. Her current work explores bodily and human relationships to industrial material—to substances derived from organic compounds. This investigation questions human ties between the internal and manufactured world.
Yanko pulls metal and other materials such as marble from salvage yards, rerouting the discarded material’s life cycle. These objects are viewed as osmotic, moving away from the realm of man-made, returning to an inherent existence where their compositions may be redefined. Yanko employs a call-and-response between the visible histories of these objects and her body’s ability to reposition the materials. Her sculptural work challenges the objects’ given identities through the process of recontextualization, changing the way they present to the world.
Movements of the artist’s body are integral to the creation of the paint skins, and directly relate to the dispersive nature of the fluid medium. Color is treated as a material, as the liquid paint is poured, and pigments combined. Responding to Yanko’s other elements, the malleable skins are folded and slumped to alter the existing structure. The married metal and skin create a polyphonic discourse emphasizing a synergetic material connection. This visceral interaction with latex paint has inspired Yanko to meaningfully combine other materials into her practice, and has prompted her to delve into metal-based work.