Yvonne Mullock was born in Chester, Cheshire, UK in 1978. Graduating from the Glasgow School of Art with a B.A (Hons) Drawing and Painting in 2001 she currently lives and works in Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Programmes and Exhibitions
The work of Yvonne Mullock spans diverse interests in nature and craft and incorporates drawing, sculpture, ceramics, video, and textiles for both gallery and site-specific installations. Recent projects and exhibitions include ‘Charrette Roulette’ at the Art Gallery of Alberta (2015-16), HOME ECONOMICS at the Textile Museum of Canada, Future Station: 2015 Alberta Biennial of Contemporary Art, Calgary’s 2015 Biennial Atlas Sighed, HIT & MISS at Esker Foundation Contemporary Art Gallery, Beaver Fever at Glasgow’s Project Room and a 4-year community quilt art project with Fogo Island Arts and Shorefast in Newfoundland.
As an artist, Yvonne Mullock draws inspiration from things that surround her and adds her own humorous ideas. She appears to love mixing the world of animals, plants and objects to create vulgarity and hilarity. In her mixed media and collage based installation “Ignorance on Trial” Yvonne Mullock presents a surreal landscape of Vogue catalogue manicured hands and botanical images of fungi that presents a playful and unnerving examination of both plant and human sexuality.
Targetting high culture
Yvonne Mullock targets high culture with typical British humour, using taboo, absurdity, crassness, sarcasm and insensitivity. But as an artist, she wants to remove class divisions, good manners, high and low, restrictions on the body and language and that create inequalities in society. With an honest and direct approach to life, Mullock enjoys the challenge of breaking through the oddities of high art, evidenced in all her work.
Yvonne Mullock is challenging why something has the power to offend. Why is an art exhibition considered out of bounds for certain works such as hers? Why is there an idea of the artist as genius and general high culture?
Mullock likes to use handmade craft work (in British terms, a working-class art) collage, magazines, illustration books, profanity and nudity to destroy high and low art divisions. The Breast Bearing Quilts directly destroy the division between ‘high’ and ‘low’ art. These pieces bring out issues with identity politics and community advocacy and society’s persistent fear of the female body, its association with the downtrodden and the attempt to cover what is natural and integral to life.
Collaborative performance art
In 2014 Yvonne Mullock, along with members of the The Chinook Guild of Fibre Arts, transformed Esker’s project space into a live, functioning workshop. Using worn clothing and old household linens from the locality a hooked rug was created over the course of 10 weeks. This collaborative, performance-art, community-based project with public interaction and discussion welcomed throughout, produced a form of community portrait addressing notions of materiality, collectivity, authorship, domesticity, and the activity and performance essential to the act of making.
Mullock’s works incorporating the handmade, the erotic, the animalistic, the comedic and the vulgar may be considered lapses of ‘good taste’, but they exemplify the various theories of why transgressive art is beneficial to society. They make us question truth and conventions, while showing us who we really are through the compromising of our conceptual and/or physical boundaries and limits and within a critical art context.