my solo show ‘indoor playground’ at the stall gallery was reveiwed there was was reviewed by bart gazzola in planet s, saskatoon’ s city magazine (vol. 7, issue 20). he also wrote a review of my work showing at the mendel art gallery’s ‘artists by artists’ show in 2007.
Nightmares And Dreamscapes
RISING STAR CONTRASTS HAPPINESS AND HORROR IN LATEST EXHIBIT
by Bart Gazzola
YUKA YAMAGUCHI — INDOOR PLAYGROUND
Runs to May 24
The Stall Gallery
It has been said that, in terms of human endeavours, 90 per cent fall in the category of failure, while 10 per cent succeeds. In terms of the art world, I’d be comfortable raising the former to 95.
Cynical, sure — but I was speaking to someone recently about the differing art worlds (or genres), and how they can all too often be sadly incongruous, contradictory and vicious (not to mention vacuous) in the assertion of their primacy. The failure of this approach can be seen in the corporate wallpaper of the RBC painting competition, for example, or the manner in which ideology and poor execution, regrettably, has characterized many an Artist-Run Centre (ARC) — to their detriment.
Perhaps, this may simply be a crisis of faith concerning the current world of art on my part — a world where far too many people speak about how their works sell as supposed proof of their value. To that, I can only respond that there’s a thriving market for porn and crack, as well.
Happily, an antidote to that type of frustration comes in the most recent work by local artist Yuka Yamaguchi, currently showing at the Stall Gallery. Her career is taking off — and deservedly so, thanks to exhibitions in the past such as Flatlanders at the Mendel (where she displayed some of the strongest work in the show), and now with this solo exhibition of newer works.
Yamaguchi’s works are often deliberate and sparse, and yet always colourful and engaging. There is a childlike — not at all to be confused with childish — nature to her work: it’s playful and exploratory, and full of bright colours. The actors in her scenes are all young, and some seem to be enjoying themselves, while others appear somewhat put upon, or suffering stoically….
earlier in planet S, my solo show was listed as the #1 event in saskatoon. the write-up says:: yuka yamaguchi’s art is gorgeously cute and cuddly — until you notice how disturbing some of these images are. originally from japan. saskatoon is seriously lucky to have her in this city!”
thanks for having me, saskatoon. i like living here.