Shifting Conversations 1 is created on the premise of search, the act of seeking out traces of things left behind, and information and memory transmitted through the materiality of earth. The gathering together of these traces, to be offered up again to whoever encounters the work, offers a rhythmic cycle to St. Rose Yeo’s artistic practice.
These patterned vessels reference a pieced together whole; a whole which reflects the echoes of both our past and our future. The form of the vessels, and the carvings that pattern the surface, reference ceramic and textile design in the Caribbean, West Africa and Western Europe. It is through the complexity of connection and the complexity of “time” that St. Rose Yeo reflects on the words of Derek Walcott in relation to these works:
“Break a vase, and the love that reassembles the fragments is stronger than that love which took its symmetry for granted when it was whole. The glue that fits the pieces is the sealing of its original shape. It is such a love that reassembles our African and Asiatic fragments, the cracked heirlooms whose restoration shows its white scars. This gathering of broken pieces is the care and pain of the Antilles, and if the pieces are disparate, ill-fitting, they contain more pain than their original sculpture, those icons and sacred vessels taken for granted in their ancestral places. Antillean art is this restoration of our shattered histories, our shards of vocabulary, our archipelago becoming a synonym for pieces broken off from the original continent.”
Marika St. Rose Yeo
Marika St. Rose Yeo is a visual artist from Treaty 4 territory, Saskatchewan. Her artistic works and research are concerned with healing, justice and transformation through creative practice. St. Rose Yeo examines how creative practices allow us to generate possibilities for alternative futures and worlds to be imagined, outside the systems of harm we find ourselves in. St. Rose Yeo works primarily using both fired and unfired ceramics, creating forms that are constructed with fragile layers and cracks.
Marika St. Rose Yeo has a BFA with a major in ceramics from the University of Regina and a PhD in Critical and Creative Social Justice Studies through the University of British Columbia. She has been part of a number of exhibitions across the prairies and, in more recent years, her work has been displayed in galleries across British Columbia, including at the Vancouver Art Gallery (2021-2022), The Port Moody Art Gallery (2022), and at the Campbell River Art Gallery (2023). Recently, her work was acquired for the Canada Council Art Bank’s collection (2023).