Jason Bard Yarmosky used his 84-year-old grandparents as models for this discomfiting series on the intersection of the battered body and the vibrant soul. His solo “Elder Kinder” exhibition opens this week at Lyons Wier Gallery in New York. (Above: The Sound of Silence; Below: Ballet)
Yarmosky’s works explore the physical process of aging while emphasizing the youthfulness of spirit. The subjects, in children’s costumes, engage in playful and tender moments, stressing that age is not a deterrent to living fully, but a springboard for exploration. Even so, the paintings have a darkness that adds to the overall discomfort.
In a release for the exhibit, the gallery notes that the images can be seen as humiliating, or as empowering.
“The pessimist sees the images through the lens of shame and vulnerability, weighed down by social convention. The optimist sees a sense of liberation, where an adolescent’s playfulness and the freedom to dream complement the wisdom of old age.” Lyons Wier Gallery
The life-like oil paintings examine the relationship between the limitations of social norms and the freedom to explore. Yarmosky says the process of aging has always intrigued him: “I am interested in how people, in both mind and body, respond to the passage of time.”
-Whatever it is, I’m Against It
Lyons Wier Gallery, here.
Jason Yarmosky website, here.