new-york

Daisy Youngblood

McKee Gallery

Among the different streams of American art in the ’80s—the glamorous resurgence of painting, the media- and society-related photo work, the post-Pop, the post-Concept, the neo-geo, the Parisian or Frankfurtian or Benjaminian theorizing—Daisy Youngblood’s sculpture filled a peculiarly quiet niche. Made of low-fired clay, sometimes combined with found objects— sticks, teeth, hair—these small heads and torsos of people and animals worked their obvious fragility and hollowness to strong effect: The clay was all too clearly a brittle skin around a void. That empty interior was blackly visible in openings at the eye sockets and at the sites of missing limbs, for Youngblood seemed to have an aversion to shaping arms and legs; she might supply one in the form of a desiccated stick or seamlessly seal the gap, but she might also just leave a hole. Small wonder that the writing on her work often

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