The Architectural Foundation of Santa Barbara is pleased to announce a new exhibition of distinctive photographs by Sara Yerkes, entitled Artifacts: tota pulcra es. You are invited to attend a festive opening reception with the artist on Friday, October 17, from 5-7 pm. A 1st Thursday reception will also be held on November 6 from 5-8 pm, in collaboration with Downtown Santa Barbara. Refreshments will be served.
A photographic artist and art historian, Sara Yerkes combines an interest in ancient cultures with visual art expertise for this exhibition. Architectural details and historical fragments discovered during extensive travels in Italy appear in these delicate compositions. Using black and white film, she makes prints in a traditional darkroom. For this series, she transferred the emulsion onto watercolor paper, resulting in unique works of art. These photos should be viewed as artifacts used to reconstruct a past or foreign culture. Yerkes discovered the title image, tota pulcra es, on a wall in Rome. The text references a Latin phrase honoring the Virgin Mary. “This phrase, an artifact of an earlier time, expresses my reverence for the muted and richly variegated surfaces in Italy: completely beautiful and without blemish,” explains Yerkes. She uses a Lith process with a developer and paper that creates an earthy, warm tone with a certain amount of grittiness. These qualities correspond to the appearance of artifacts discovered after hundreds of years underground.
Sara Yerkes holds an M.A. in art history, with an emphasis in Roman art, from the University of Washington, Seattle. Born in Nebraska, she earned a B.A. in Psychology and German from the University of Nebraska. The artist currently lives in Santa Barbara.