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G. Lola Worthington and Mick Gidley




John Paddock and Trent Barnes

Site in Mexico, in the Valley of Oaxaca, inhabited as early as c. 400 bc; an extremely compact small city flourished there in the Late Post-Classic period (c. ad 700–1521). Its present name derives from the Zapotec terms for tree (yaga) and old (gula). Its centre occupies a large natural terrace on the south side of a high hill; the top was fortified, and houses covered the slopes. Since no modern community covers the Yagul remains, its temples, palace, secular public buildings, ballcourt, and streets are clearly visible.

Around 400 bc ceramic sculptures with Olmec traits were placed in burials at Yagul (Oaxaca, Mus. Reg.). The site was nearly uninhabited until c. ad 700. When nearby Lambityeco was abandoned c. ad 700, its inhabitants apparently moved to Yagul, where they undertook the first major constructions at the site. However, the preservation of later buildings has left their work covered over. After ...


Midori Yoshimoto

(b Honolulu, HI, Oct 3, 1961).

American installation artist of Japanese ancestry. Yamamoto’s works have evoked an emotional memory that speaks to a larger social and historical context. Her delicate and labor-intensive installations have often served as visual metaphors for the forgotten lives of Japanese and Japanese Americans, many of whom were profoundly affected by the Pacific war.

Yamamoto received her BA in art from The Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington in 1983 and M.A. in studio art from New York University in 1991. She also participated in the Whitney Museum Independent Study Program and Skowhegan. From 1990 to 2003 she worked as an artist educator in museums, public schools and colleges in New York, and participated in many national and international artist-in-residence programs. From 2003 Yamamoto taught at Smith College in Northampton, MA.

Yamamoto’s early sculptural works memorialized her grandmother, Chiyo, who came to Hawaii in the early 20th century as a picture bride. She was a laundress on a sugar plantation and committed suicide at the age of 49 in ...


Robert A. Benson

(b Seattle, WA, Dec 1, 1912; d Detroit, MI, Feb 6, 1986).

American architect . He studied architecture at the University of Washington (1930–34) and at New York University (1934–5). He worked for important firms in New York and later in Detroit, where he established his own practice in 1949. The Lambert Air Terminal (1956), St Louis, MO, reflected technical principles of mainstream modernism in its thin shell concrete vaults and brought Yamasaki professional prominence. During international travels he became impressed with Gothic and Indian styles as well as indigenous Japanese building, from which he developed a romantic, non-functionalist and very personal modernism that incorporated delicacy, symmetry and understatement in a search for elegance and repose ( see fig. ). This synthetic style characterized the McGregor Center (1958), Detroit, with its prismatic glass skylights and reflecting pool; the Michigan Consolidated Gas building (1963), Detroit, with its precast surface tracery; and the Dhahran Air Terminal (...


Patricia Masse

(b Chicago, Sept 6, 1925; d Mexico City, May 2, 2002).

Mexican photographer, printmaker, and writer of American birth. After studying humanities in Chicago, in 1944 she emigrated to Mexico. From 1945 to 1958 she worked as an engraver in the Taller de Gráfica Popular with Leopoldo Méndez. She was a founder-member in 1951 of the Salón de la Plástica Mexicana. As a photographer Yampolsky studied under Lola Álvarez Bravo at the Academia de San Carlos Mexico City. Álvarez Bravo’s influence can be seen in Yampolsky’s photographs of rural Mexico, in particular vernacular architecture and harmonious depictions of sites used for either daily or ceremonial functions. She also photographed Indian or mestizo peasants engaged in domestic activities and celebrations, and she published educational and art books.

La casa que canta: Arquitectura popular mexicana. Mexico City, 1982.Estancias del olvido. Mexico City, 1987.La raíz y el camino. Mexico City, 1988.Mazahua. Toluca, 1993.Haciendo Poblanas, text by R. Rendón Garcini...


(b Mexico City, Jun 17, 1908; d Mexico City, Nov 24, 1990).

Mexican architect, writer, and theorist. He was a member of the Escuela Mexicana de Arquitectura, a group that from 1925 onwards sought to create an architecture that simultaneously expressed nationalism and modernity. Within this group, which was led by José Villagrán García, Yañez, with Juan O’Gorman and Juan Legorreta, represented the socialist tendency. In 1938, with Alberto T. Arai, Enrique Guerrero, Raúl Cacho, Carlos Leduc, and Ricardo Rivas, Yañez formed the Unión de Arquitectos Socialistas, which had a significant influence on Mexican architecture. Their approach was characterized by an emphasis on the utilitarian and social aspects of architecture, for example the reduction of spaces to a bare minimum, and by a rejection of “bourgeois” aesthetics. Nevertheless, Yañez’s own house (1935) and the Sindicato Mexicano de Electricistas Building (1938) have a certain rhythmic plasticity, albeit rationalist and sparse. Later, still in the context of developing a “nationalist functionalism,” Yañez became one of the foremost designers of hospitals in Mexico. He won the competition for the construction of the Instituto Mexicano del Seguro Social’s first hospital and designed the most important hospital complex in Mexico, the Centro Médico Nacional (...


Michelle Yun

[ Huei-Zu ]

(b Taipei, Taiwan, 1961; d New York, NY, Feb 8, 1997).

Taiwanese curator and art historian. Yang immigrated to the United States at age 15. She received a BA in Art History from Yale University in 1984 that included a six-month sabbatical to Jinan University in Guangzhou to study Chinese in 1982. Yang was exposed to art from a young age through her mother, Suhwa Chou Yang, who ran the Hunglin Art Gallery in Taipei in the 1970s. Upon graduation Yang held internships at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Museum of Modern Art , both in New York, before accepting a position as Assistant Curator at the New Museum, New York, in 1988. Notable exhibitions she curated during her time at the New Museum include 1+1+1: Works by Alfredo Jaar (1992); Skin Deep (1993); and The Final Frontier (1993). She left the New Museum in 1993 to work as an independent curator and critic while studying to earn a PhD from the Institute of Fine Arts of New York University. In early ...


Carolyn Tate

Ancient Maya city in the modern state of Chiapas, Mexico, which flourished as an important lowland capital c. 300–810 CE. Yaxchilan occupies the hills and riverbank overlooking a great bend in the Usumacinta River. Its eighteen or nineteen rulers perpetuated a 400-year-long rivalry with Piedras Negras, about 48 km downstream, for control of the subsidiary centers and sacred caves of the region. Yaxchilan’s approximately 130 carved monuments include stelae, lintels, altar-pedestals, thrones, circular ballcourt markers, and five grand hieroglyphic stairways. Their texts and images present the broadest range of ritual activities seen at any Maya site. In addition to the variety of sculptural formats and subjects, some of the monuments of Yaxchilan are widely considered to be among the most skillfully designed and carved of Maya art works. And as at many Pre-Columbian centers, its designers created alignments to solar phenomena as they planned specific buildings.

The site became well known following the explorations of ...


G. Lola Worthington

[ Jimmy Toddy ]

(b Wide Ruins, AZ, 1928).

American painter. Bill Lippencott, owner of the Wide Ruins Trading Post, gave Yazz paints and paper, encouraging him to paint at the age of seven. Lippencott and wife Sallie recognized Yazz’s artistic talent and advised him to pursue art seriously. At the age of ten, his work was exhibited by a museum in Springfield, IL. Completing his education at Sherman Indian School, CA, he established himself as an artist with a long national career.

Yazz enlisted in the Marines during World War II as a Navajo Code Talker. After the war, he studied art at Mills College in Oakland, CA, working under Yasuo Kuniyoshi . Returning to the Navajo reservation near Wide Ruins, he earnestly began his artistic painting career.

Painting subjects familiar from his daily reservation life, Yazz specialized in typical daily and ceremonial scenes. His paintings utilize flat minimal backgrounds and suspend his subjects in a floating and entertaining world. The paintings record the natural movement of light and air with powerful drama....


Jorge Luján-Muñoz

(b Guatemala City, Sept 18, 1888; d Guatemala City, Apr 17, 1942).

Guatemalan sculptor. He was first trained by his father, Baldomero Yela Montenegro (1859–1909), who was a sculptor and marble-carver. While still very young he worked with the Venezuelan sculptor Santiago González, a former student of Auguste Rodin, then resident in Guatemala, and with the Italian Antonio Doninelli, who ran a bronze foundry workshop. He was also extremely friendly with the Guatemalan painters Carlos Mérida and Carlos Valenti (1884–1912), and with the Spanish Catalan painter and sculptor Jaime Sabartés (1881–1968), who later became Picasso’s secretary. His first important sculptures, both in Guatemala City, were monuments to J. F. Barrundia (1905–1906) in the General Cemetery and to Isabel La Católica (1915).

Around 1921 Yela Günther went to Mexico, where he came into contact with the anthropologist Manuel Gamio, who directed his attention towards Maya and Aztec art. He also had the encouragement of Diego Rivera, who wrote enthusiastically of his work in ...


Jenifer P. Borum

(b Ash Grove, MO, Feb 20, 1890; d Chicago, IL, Dec 25, 1972).

American painter of African, Cherokee, Creek, and European ancestry. Although Yoakum claimed to have been born on a Navajo reservation in 1888, his birthplace and childhood home has been established as Ash Grove, MO. His aunt was adopted by a Navajo family, and although the artist drew great inspiration from the Navajo, his connection to them was imaginary. Yoakum’s life was indeed one of adventure and travel—he toured with Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show, the Ringling Bros. Circus, and also traveled around the world as stow-away and later as a soldier in World War I. Yet the line between fact and fantasy will always be blurred when contending with his lyrical landscapes that ostensibly offer a record of his far-ranging adventures to exotic locales.

While Yoakum began to draw by the 1950s, he did not devote himself to this calling until he had retired in the early 1960s. Settling in Chicago in ...


Lawrence Wodehouse

(b Lebanon, NH, June 19, 1798; d Washington, DC, March 13, 1874).

American architect . Trained by his father as a builder, he designed houses, churches and collegiate buildings in New Hampshire and Vermont, including three utilitarian dormitories (1828–9, 1839–40) and an observatory (1852) for Dartmouth College. Although he lacked a formal architectural education, he obtained the commission for the Vermont State Capitol (1833–6), a Neo-classical building with a Doric portico, capped for exterior effect by a hemispherical dome as there was no internal domed space. (A new drum and dome were added after a fire in 1857.) In 1837 Young won a competition for the Boston Custom House; this was his largest commission, completed in 1847 at a cost of over one million dollars. In 1911–14 it became the base for a skyscraper for the federal government. The only surviving competition drawing (pencil, watercolour and gouache; Washington, DC, N. Archvs) illustrates the building’s magnificent internal domed space; monolithic granite columns surround the exterior of the building, which has pedimented ends and Doric porticos on the long sides....


Julia Robinson

(b Bern, ID, Oct 13, 1935).

American composer. Young was an exponent of experimental “drone” music and an originator of Minimalism (whose diverse practitioners include Terry Riley, Steve Reich and Philip Glass). Educated at the University of California, Los Angeles (1957–8), he completed his graduate studies in composition at the University of California, Berkeley. An avid and talented jazz musician, Young performed with legendary figures Ornette Coleman and Don Cherry. In 1959, he attended Summer Courses at Darmstadt, the center of New Music, taking advanced composition with Karlheinz Stockhausen. There he discovered the work of John Cage and met Cage’s great interpreter David Tudor, who put Young in contact with Cage. Back in California, Young presented Cage’s work, adopting some of his radical strategies in his own music. A landmark Young composition of this period is Poem for Tables, Chairs, Benches, etc. (1960), a piece of indeterminate duration.

In 1960 Young moved to New York and galvanized a receptive circle of Cage-inspired artists and composers. Young’s most significant contribution to this milieu were his ...


Roberta K. Tarbell

( Mackintosh )

(b Salt Lake City, UT, Aug 9, 1877; d Norwalk, CT, Nov 2, 1957).

American sculptor, painter, etcher and teacher. Grandson of Mormon leader Brigham Young, Young spent his childhood on a farm near his father’s company, Deseret Woolen Mills and in Salt Lake City, both in the Utah Territory. As a youth, he sketched farmers and workers constructing the transcontinental railroads. From 1897 to 1899 he studied with a Beaux-Arts trained teacher, James T. Harwood (1860–1940), and worked as an artist and engraver for the Salt Lake Tribune, the Salt Lake Herald and the Deseret News (1894–1901). Young experienced the “Old West” directly.

Young’s teachers at the Art Students League in New York (1899–1900) were Kenyon Cox and George Bridgman (1865–1943). During his years in Paris (1901–5), Young befriended Stein family, §2 and Alfred H(enry) Maurer and took classes with Jean-Paul Laurens and Charles Raoul Verlet (1857–1923) at the Académie Julian, and with ...


Morgan Falconer

(b St Louis, MO, March 25, 1926).

American painter and sculptor. His studies at several institutions were interrupted by service during World War II: University of Missouri (1943–4); University of Carolina (1944–6), where he first studied drawing; again at the University of Missouri (1947), where he completed a BA in journalism; and the Ecole des Beaux-Arts, Paris (1947), where he met Ellsworth Kelly, among others. He returned to the USA and settled among artists in New York in 1956. While in Paris, Youngerman was influenced by the woodcuts of Vasily Kandinsky and Hans Arp and by Henri Matisse’s cut-outs, in response to which he developed a hard-edged style, a predilection for frontality, flatness and simple motifs. By the late 1950s, in seminal works such as Red White (1958; see 1986 exh. cat., p. 32) his forms were increasingly consolidated around a central motif marked out in a starkly contrasting palette. Soon influenced by the emerging Pop art of the 1960s, Youngerman moved away from the scumbled surface textures of his work during the 1950s towards smoother expanses with more varied colour relationships; white took over from black as the dominant colour, and sweeping, open curves were introduced, for example in ...


(b Santiago, 1931).

Chilean painter and ceramist. A self-taught painter, in the 1950s and 1960s he based his landscape motifs and colors on the Andes, using very simple forms suggestive of Pre-Columbian textiles in their flat, abstract designs and balanced chromatic effects. It was a question of subjecting archetypal shapes to a subtle and rational play of color. While remaining committed to a careful technique in both his oil paintings and pastels, Yrarrázaval fundamentally changed direction in 1973, when he began to represent isolated and suspended figures undergoing gradual deterioration: faceless and with their bodies swollen as if by internal pressure, they appear to have lost their identity, leaving behind only realistically painted shirts, collars, and ties. The suggestion is of a collective anonymity, an identity crisis embodied in purely external human gestures revealed through social rituals and through the status and prestige accorded to dress and fashion. Yrarrázaval continued in these works to emphasize the material quality of his paintings and the strong three-dimensional illusion of his forms, relying exclusively on the palette knife to reveal or conceal forms by a meticulous modeling of light and shade....


Nelly Perazzo

(b Buenos Aires, Dec 6, 1879; d Buenos Aires, March 4, 1950).

Argentine sculptor. He enrolled at the Escuela de la Sociedad Estímulo de Bellas Artes, Buenos Aires, in 1898 and soon afterwards joined the studio of the sculptor Lucio Correa Morales (1852–1923). In 1899 he won a scholarship to study in Europe. In Paris he attended the studio of the sculptor Jules-Félix Coutan, at the same time studying drawing at the Académie Colarossi; he made studies of corpses in the morgue and acquired a great mastery of human anatomy. At the Salon in Paris in 1903 he exhibited The Sinners (see Prins), a major group of six female figures, influenced by Rodin’s Burghers of Calais in its rhythmic arabesques, open treatment of line and soft modelling. In 1904 it was shown again at the World’s Fair in St Louis, MO, where it was awarded a major prize, but he renounced both the prize and associated commission because of a controversy about his youth....


Constantino Reyes-Valerio and Liliana Herrera

Term used to designate the architecture characteristic of the Yucatán peninsula in south-east Mexico, particularly the religious architecture of the 16th century. A number of factors militated against Spanish settlement in Yucatán in the early 16th century, notably the intense heat, difficulties in irrigating the area, the lack of precious metals, and the sparseness of the Indian population, which was mostly Maya. Consequently, the peninsula’s social and economic development was very different from that of the more densely populated central plateau, and this was reflected in its architecture, which was of a simpler and more austere character.

Despite the obstacles to settlement, Franciscan missionaries arrived in the Yucatán peninsula in the 1530s and 1540s and began to construct simple buildings to house the monks. In order to accommodate the large congregations of Indians, however, and to protect them from the sun, they built ramadas, or large shelters, in the monastery compounds. These were supported by tree trunks, with roofs made from branches, and they had no side walls, thereby allowing the free passage of air. Services were conducted from a small, open-fronted stone chapel or chancel, which was built facing the ...


(b Riga, July 15, 1900; d New York, Dec 24, 1983).

American painter and printmaker of Latvian birth. He enrolled in art school in Petrograd (now St Petersburg) and then travelled through Russia. Early influences were Vasily Kandinsky and Kazimir Malevich. He left the country after the Revolution (1917). During the 1920s he lived variously in Europe and Latin America, establishing contact with such leading artists as Emil Nolde, Karl-Georg Heise (1890–1979), and Diego Rivera. Yunkers fought in the Spanish Civil War (1936–9) and moved to Stockholm from 1939 to 1947, where he edited and published the periodicals Creation, Ars, and Art Portfolio (1969 exh. cat., pp. 30–31). In 1947 ten years’ work was lost in a studio fire.

Yunkers immigrated to the USA in 1947, acquiring citizenship in 1953. At this time he embarked on ambitious projects of prints and paintings including Polyptych, a five-panel woodcut, 4 m long, and in 1957 a series of large-scale pastels culminating in ...