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Karen Yank

Artist Email: hamonyank@cybermesa.com

Artist Website: karenyank.com

Medium: Public Art: Metals and mixed media. Site-specific designs, free-standing sculptures, fountains, wall reliefs, benches and shade structures, mobiles, stained glass.

Artist Statement

I create art because it is the closest expression of life that I have found. I start each piece through meditation and I create from waking inspiration. My inspirations are informed by the idyllic landscape. This is not to say that my sculptures represent nature, but rather that they represent the emotional impact one feels when in the natural setting. The focus of my work is on non-verbal communication and emotional expression. I strive to stimulate the viewers’ response by activating emotions associated with past experiences, creating a more meaningful insight.

I work primarily in mixed metals, because of their strength and durability. Little to no maintenance is needed. I strive to reveal an organic nature with a sense of history in a material that is usually cold and industrial. Every weld and grind mark is an intentional decision. I love to completely mesh different metals together reflecting a beauty that can only be found in the organic.

Over a span of 20 years, I have been fortunate to create 35 large-scale public sculptures. Seen in my images of previous commissions is my largest scale project to date, one can find 500’of my sculpture installed along the 2 pedestrian bridges at the I-40/Coors Freeway Interchange in Albuquerque, along with two 16’ freestanding sculptures in the landscape and designs for all the sound walls in the entire interchange. I worked closely with the State, City, and community members. This played an important role in developing both the aesthetic and technical concepts I incorporated in my designs. My efforts on this project won two awards for Aesthetics and Public Involvement; PRIDE Award from the American Road and Transportation Builders Association and the Golden Cumbre Award from the New Mexico Public Relations Society Of America. The entire project has won ten national awards.

I manage an inherently collaborative practice of balancing my ideas with the limitations imposed by engineering, architectural and funding concerns. My process in inherently based on Context Sensitive Solutions. The design of my art expresses a context that can be understood in a moment, but with layers that can be seen for those who pause to look deeper.