Wednesday, 13 July 2016
Interview with Marie Yates
Interview: Marie Yates
Some Dimensions of my Lunch: Conceptual Art in Britain (1956-1979). Part 2: Marie Yates
Richard Saltoun Gallery
24 June - 22 July 2016
Marie Yates (b1940) graduated from Manchester Regional College of Art in 1959. After a period spent producing abstract paintings in St Ives, she returned to study fine art at Hornsey College of Art (1968-71). During this time, she was strongly influenced by the writings of Lucy Lippard and Yoko Ono and the beginnings of conceptual art. She began to produce her Field Workings – photographic and text works, documenting journeys or “procedures” in the countryside – and, in 1979, she made Image/woman/text (after Roland Barthes), exploring social preconceptions about photographic images of women, the way they are made, and their meanings.
In June 1977, Fenella Crichton wrote in Studio International: “Marie Yates is a woman working with landscape. Radical ideas do not fit easily into this framework, because we are deeply riddled with prejudices about both women and landscape, and as a result she has been widely misinterpreted.” This misinterpretation, sadly, seems to persist. Yates’s work is currently being exhibited at Richard Saltoun as part of the gallery’s conceptual art series, but the artist remains wary of labels. For her, art is key to social change and ought to form part of a larger discourse, critically engaging the mind.
Read the interview here