Meryl Yana

JO-HS Residency July-August 2023

Meryl Yana is a French artist born in Paris currently based in London. She is currently the artist in residence at JO-HS gallery based in Mexico City and working there towards her solo show. She recently completed a six months residency at the Museum of Goa, India, where she was invited as a resident artist in the midst of the pandemic. She ended her residency with a solo exhibition; ‘Ode From A Grain Of Sand” at the museum. She studied in the Chelsea College of Arts, London where she completed her BA of fine Arts in 2020. She has previously been part of the PADA Residency in Barreiro and the MONO Residency in Lisbon.

Yana’s latest pieces are a rearrangement of a set of instinctively chosen elements, inviting the viewer to reflect on the human condition, modernity, ancestral practices, sacred and transgressions themes. Questions about the nature of image making, about what governs inclusion and exclusion, rules and taboos, and sexuality are core themes driving her practice. Yana has used material processes and the principles of the palimpsest to create pieces rooted in the distinctive acts of erasing, hiding and layering that define most archeological finds. She creates works which physical transformation she hoped could contain both past and present, functioning not as record but rather as testaments to the possibilities of time. Indeed, one of the most surprising aspect of Yana’s work is how little she can foresee the visual outcome of her experiments. She is guided not so much by an idea of an image but rather by her physical encounter with the laws of chance. As their layered process and aesthetic result remind us of ancient artifacts as well as rock art, this alchemy often results in the works having contemplative and almost sacred tones.