Small XO Trio
Dimensions: 12 x 40 x 1.5″
Media: galvanized steel and stainless steel
Karen Yank – Small XO Trio is an excellent example of many of the geometric themes that frequently appear in Yank’s work, including but not limited to the line, the circle, and the “XO”. The line, a symbol representative of her late mentor Agnes Martin, represents the boundary between the earth and the sky; this is often juxtaposed with the circle, a shape meant to represent the dome of the sky. Given Yank’s affinity for nature and the fact that she takes inspiration from it, it is unsurprising that for her, the circle represents a multitude of concepts of nature, such as the cycle of life, the sun, and the moon.
The “XO” shape began as part of a series that originated from a 2005 exhibition in New York; it was created as a powerful statement of empathy for the people of New York following the 9/11 attacks in 2001. She has continued to work with this theme to further embody her hopes for a peaceful and harmonious world.
Yank’s work is displayed across the nation, in 40 different public sculptures from New York City, New York to Boulder, Colorado. Many more of her award-winning pieces are featured in galleries and museums across the United States as well. Her commissions, which are most prominently featured in the Southwest, make her the most established sculptor in the state.
Yank cites the idyllic landscapes and nature of New Mexico as enormous sources of inspiration. She describes her work as representative of not only the nature itself, but rather the emotional impact that one feels when immersed in nature.
Yank’s work will be featured in an exhibition called “Karen Yank and Agnes Martin: Student and Mentor” at Turner Carroll Gallery in Santa Fe, New Mexico, in the summer of 2018.