Yael Kanarek’s creative practice centers on the fundamental hypothesis that language and numerals render reality, and that this reality is an entirely subjective singular field.
She looks at how language and numbers operate an emotional landscape by shuffling their physical properties: material, shape, and sound. Employing modes of authorship (storytelling, computer code, and multiple languages), Kanarek’s works touch the philosophical boundaries of the political and spiritual; artistic and scientific; private and universal, horizontal and vertical. Minimalist and formal abstractions of subject matter feature in Kanarek’s work, yet the content is typically emotional and passionate.
Kanarek draws from the multilingual landscape of her childhood in Israel, where narrative (both ancient and modern) plays a dramatic role in defining people's lives. Ambiguous and contradictory narratives spur heat between people and bond them together. Crossing these sensibilities with her observation of the Internet as a network made of natural and computer languages, her most recent projects, the internet art work Object of Desire and the series Textworks, engage multiple languages to highlight connection and rejection.
Kanarek's interest in the subject of time prompted her to design software that synchs video and audio with the computer clock. She has been integrating her interest in formalist aesthetic with the chaos of daily life into a growing body of these computational videos.
Kanarek plays with the vocabulary of communication protocols and spots evidence of the body in computer languages. In the series Code:Skin, the sculpture Spin_Lock is a soft and flowing banner of linux source code transferred onto organza ribbon floating like a bridal dress. In a series of photographs, a dancer dressed in the code is asked to “perform” functions of the software, such as Sleep_Mode and Attached. The Internet art work Destruction and Mending approaches the website as a body.
Realized in three of seven chapters, the Traveler's Journal online diary tells the quest of a mysterious traveler who searches for lost treasure in a parallel world, Sunset/Sunrise: In a junky retro interface, an old laptop delivers love-letters, travelogs and descriptions of navigation tools.
Continuing to unfold as part of her ongoing creative practice, Kanarek’s Traveler's Journal began in 1995, and has since been recognized internationally as an early example of net.art.
bitforms gallery, new york, new york [website].
Contact: yael at treasurecrumbs dot com