Night Gallery is very pleased to present two new sculptures from Jacob Yanes: a representation of Chilean musician and activist Victor Jara, and an embracing couple named after two streams from a fountain described in Dante’s Purgatorio, its water bearing transformative, redemptive power. Jara, a legendary musician and fighter for human rights in his native Chile, was tortured and killed for his activism by Pinochet’s regime during the repressions that followed the US-backed coup of 1973. Yanes’ sculptural portrait of the songwriter is silver-leafed, its surface developing a delicate patina over time. The latter piece is centered on the intertwining of the two figures, together representing the process of purgatory and subsequent forgiveness.
Yanes’ figures are rendered nearly life-like, their uncanny presence emphasizing the often-tragic narratives behind their making. The works are generated by mythological and historical narratives and function as allegories, ultimately embodying a wish for empathy, understanding, and human connection.
Jacob Yanes (b. Yonkers, NY 1974) received his MFA from UCLA in 2008, and his BFA from Brandeis University in 1996. Yanes has exhibited work at venues such as The Armory Center for the Arts, Pasadena, CA (2013); Steve Turner Contemporary, Los Angeles, CA (2012); and the Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, CA (2012). Yanes also belongs to the Hammer Museum's public collection.