Yael Kanarek’s creative practice centers on the fundamental hypothesis that language and numerals render reality, and that this reality is an entirely subjective unified field. Through the shuffling of physical properties that construct our use of language (matter, shape, sound), Kanarek’s work examines how verbal signifiers operate emotionally.
Employing modes of authorship such as storytelling, multilingualism, Kanarek manipulates the biographical predisposition of cultural associations. As an Israeli-American, Kanarek’s perception is tempered with an awareness of post-national borderlines. Her work enters spaces of meaning determined by a global network and the negotiation of identity that occurs when confronted with multiple systems. Crossing these sensibilities with her observation of the Internet as a network made of language – natural and computer – her most recent projects highlight connection and rejection.
Selected for the 2002 Whitney Biennial, exhibitions of Kanarek’s work also include The Drawing Center, New York; Beral Madra Contemporary Art, Istanbul; National Museum of Contemporary Art, Athens; CU Museum, Boulder; Cantor Arts Center, Stanford University; The Jewish Museum, New York; Exit Art; The Kitchen; American Museum of the Moving Image, New York; LIMN Gallery, San Francisco; Holster Projects, London; Wood Street Galleries, Pittsburgh; bitforms gallery, New York; Nelly Aman, Tel Aviv; Boston CyberArts Festival; HVCCA, Peekskill; Arena 1, Santa Monica; California College of the Arts, San Francisco; Orsini Palace, Bomarzo; and Sala Uno Gallery, Rome. Kanarek’s work has also been shown in New York at Kenny Schachter Contemporary, Silverstein Gallery, Ronald Feldman Gallery, Derek Eller Gallery, A.I.R Gallery, 303 Gallery, and Schroeder Romero Gallery.
In addition to a Rockefeller New Media Fellowship and an Eyebeam Honorary Fellowship, Kanarek is the recipient of grants from the Jerome Foundation Media Arts and New York Foundation for the Arts; commissions from the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Turbulence.org, and The Alternative Museum; Kanarek’s distinctions also include a Harvestworks residency. In 1999, she founded Upgrade! International. She holds an MFA from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.