Yuli Yamagata's 'Sweet Dreams, Nosferatu' reviewed in The New Yorker by Andrea K. Scott

"In 2004, the Anton Kern gallery organized an unforgettable show titled “SCREAM,” identifying a new glam-grotesque aesthetic in the work of young artists influenced by horror movies. A sequel of sorts has arrived at the gallery: “Sweet Dreams, Nosferatu,” the striking début of Yuli Yamagata, a wildly imaginative, thirty-one-year-old Brazilian artist who’s fascinated by the macabre—from vampires to manga—and by the tension between revulsion and beauty. Of the twenty-one vividly colorful pieces on view (through Oct. 23), the most seductive are at once soft sculptures and paintings, sewn from silk, elastane, felt, patterned fabric, velvet, and cloth that Yamagata hand-dyes using a shibori technique, a nod to her Japanese ancestry. The subjects of these big, perversely enticing works include a manicured claw, a goat’s head, a bat, and an opulent cephalopod (“Yoru Ika,” pictured above). The last might be an homage to a vampire-adjacent genre of trans-species erotica, famously portrayed in Hokusai’s 1814 ukiyo-e woodcut 'The Dream of the Fisherman’s Wife,' in which an octopus takes a human being as a lover."

— Andrea K. Scott

September 24, 2021
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