Carolyn Drake: Knit Club

March 5 - April 9, 2022
  • Yancey Richardson is pleased to present Knit Club, an exhibition of photographs by American artist Carolyn Drake. In the project gallery, a selection of work from her series Isolation Therapy will be on view. Strikingly different in subject matter and approach, each series offers the viewer an alternate view of reality that deliberately blurs the line between what is real and imagined. This is the artist’s debut exhibition with the gallery.

  • Karen, 2018. Archival pigment print, 20 x 15 inches.

    Karen, 2018. Archival pigment print, 20 x 15 inches.

  • The works on view in the main gallery are drawn from the series Knit Club, the result of a several-years-long collaboration with a group of women Drake met while living in Water Valley, Mississippi. Drake shies away from literal descriptions, and leans toward the surreal and mysterious to present a different perspective on southern femininity and motherhood. The viewer is encouraged to question preconceptions of what it means to be a “woman.” The male gaze is disavowed through the obscuring of subjects’ faces and bodies, allowing the women to reclaim the ability to craft their own stories. Influenced by the writer William Faulkner, the images are enigmatic, Gothic in style, and richly layered with a symbolism that resists interpretation. As with much of her earlier work, Drake’s subjects are also artists, integral to the construction of the photographs.

    • Carolyn Drake Dollhouse, 2019 Archival pigment print 22 1/2 x 30 inches Edition of 5
      Carolyn Drake
      Dollhouse, 2019
      Archival pigment print
      22 1/2 x 30 inches
      Edition of 5
      $4,500.00
      View more details
    • Carolyn Drake Jackie and Leah, 2018 Archival pigment print 50 x 37 1/2 inches Edition of 3
      Carolyn Drake
      Jackie and Leah, 2018
      Archival pigment print
      50 x 37 1/2 inches
      Edition of 3
      $8,500.00
      View more details
    • Carolyn Drake Megan and Hazel Sue, 2018 Archival pigment print 50 x 37 1/2 inches Edition of 5
      Carolyn Drake
      Megan and Hazel Sue, 2018
      Archival pigment print
      50 x 37 1/2 inches
      Edition of 5
      $8,500.00
      View more details
  • 'We pulled symbols of domesticity and womanhood from our daily environments and played with warping and arranging them in ways...

    Elise with Snake, 2019. Archival pigment print, 37 1/2 x 50 inches. 

    "We pulled symbols of domesticity and womanhood from our daily environments and played with warping and arranging them in ways that defies what looks 'normal.' Rejecting the idea that there is an essence of womanhood or that a photograph can reveal anyone’s true self, we tweaked the visual tropes to flatten them and make them our game."

                                                   - Carolyn Drake

    • Carolyn Drake Katherine, 2019 Archival pigment print 37 1/2 x 50 inches Edition of 5
      Carolyn Drake
      Katherine, 2019
      Archival pigment print
      37 1/2 x 50 inches
      Edition of 5
      $8,500.00
      View more details
    • Carolyn Drake Lucy with Azaleas, 2018 Archival pigment print 37 1/2 x 50 inches Edition of 5
      Carolyn Drake
      Lucy with Azaleas, 2018
      Archival pigment print
      37 1/2 x 50 inches
      Edition of 5
      $8,500.00
      View more details
    • Carolyn Drake Adrienne and Zion, 2018 Archival pigment print 37 1/2 x 50 inches Edition of 5
      Carolyn Drake
      Adrienne and Zion, 2018
      Archival pigment print
      37 1/2 x 50 inches
      Edition of 5
      $8,500.00
      View more details
  • Eagle Eye, 2019. Archival pigment print, 50 x 37 /2 inches.

    Eagle Eye, 2019. Archival pigment print, 50 x 37 /2 inches.

  • April 20, 2020. Archival pigment print, 50 x 37 1/2 inches.

    April 20, 2020. Archival pigment print, 50 x 37 1/2 inches. 

  • In the project gallery is a presentation of six works from the series Isolation Therapy, recently included in SFMOMA’s group show Close to Home: Creativity in Crisis. During the initial lockdowns of 2020, a new mode of photographing emerged for Drake, shaped by the restrictions and highly structured. Each day in her backyard, the artist brought together incongruous materials drawn from her house and the outdoor environment, cutting, stacking, and precariously pinning them together. Provisional, totem-like structures emerged and were photographed by Drake against brightly-colored tarps or cloths, forming a makeshift studio. These agglomerations of household objects, tree branches, printed material and vegetation take on an anthropomorphic quality both humorous and unnerving to behold.

     

    A surveillance camera inserted into the sculptures further animates them, gifting them the ability to observe the artist as she documents and orchestrates their transformation. As with Knit Club, Drake complicates the traditional power dynamic between photographer and subject. By having the sculptures record her every move, Isolation Therapy also speaks to questions of agency, boundaries between public and private observation, and our heightened dependence on technology during the pandemic.

  • Carolyn Drake, November 24, 2020

    Carolyn Drake

    November 24, 2020 Archival pigment print
    50 x 37 1/2 inches
    Edition of 5
    • Carolyn Drake April 21, 2020 Archival pigment print 50 x 37 1/2 inches Edition of 5
      Carolyn Drake
      April 21, 2020
      Archival pigment print
      50 x 37 1/2 inches
      Edition of 5
      $8,500.00
      View more details
    • Carolyn Drake May 27, 2020 Archival pigment print 50 x 37 1/2 inches Edition of 5
      Carolyn Drake
      May 27, 2020
      Archival pigment print
      50 x 37 1/2 inches
      Edition of 5
      $8,500.00
      View more details
    • Carolyn Drake May 30, 2020 Archival pigment print 50 x 37 1/2 inches Edition of 5
      Carolyn Drake
      May 30, 2020
      Archival pigment print
      50 x 37 1/2 inches
      Edition of 5
      $8,500.00
      View more details
  • Born in California in 1971, Drake studied Media/Culture and History at Brown University, graduating in 1994. Her work has been supported by a Guggenheim fellowship, the Anamorphosis Prize book prize, Peter S Reed Foundation, Lightwork, the Do Good Fund, the Lange Taylor prize, Magnum Foundation, Pulitzer Center, and a Fulbright fellowship. She is a member of Magnum Photos and a recipient of the HCB Award 2021. In October 2023, a new body of work exploring southern masculinity will be presented in a solo exhibition at The Henri Cartier Bresson Foundation, Paris.