The body and the skin that holds it in one piece are resilient to weather and water. The skin holds in what is most precious and protects it from external elements, which could corrupt or distort its mechanical workings. Skin however, is opaque and without the qualities associated with window glass-another material that seals the internal from the external, braving its outside surface to the plight of cold, wind, and all manner of insect and germ. Plate Glass’ inside surface works as an ambient gauge for the interior life of the home or building. Over time, both skin and glass begin to sag and crack and become ephemeral hosts to the movements of their interior. The movement of glass, shifted by sand grain and time are of a longer life than that of the fragility that encompasses organic skin if the environment is favorable. If not, glass fractures and becomes the easiest of serrated edges in which meeting with skin can puncture or denude the host of its most precious organ. Daisuke Yokota is no stranger to surface, nor fragility.
For his exhibition GLASS at Kominek Gallery (Berlin), Yokota juxtaposes his sensitive studies of the nude body, his cold landscapes and his quixotic interior rooms with the condition of a new and precious materiality in which his photographic image is printed on glass. Light, emulsion (skin) and subject interweave a new paradigm in which the focus of Yokota’s lens is given a status of object over that of the normal photographic print. We may think of the works as prismatic and perhaps even dangerous should their form shift and crack or break. Surface is prevalent in many of Yokota’s works as is abstraction. In working with glass, Yokota is determined to make the surface of his work even more integral to his normal process creating a very special and jewel-like art form in which its precious state must be observed lest it be given over to its dangerous and cutting potential. Glass like skin is compressed by time, its condition precipice on the notion that its qualities are at all times exposed and present to the external world in which it must survive, flourish and proceed.
Brad Feuerhelm April, 2019