For its Third Annual Art Series, New York City Ballet (NYCB) commissioned contemporary artist Dustin Yellin to create fifteen of his signature Psychogeography sculptures currently on view at Lincoln Center’s David H. Koch Theatre. Fortunately for NeueHouse members and guests, there’s an original Yellin neatly nestled in a nook en route to the NH library and screening room.
The artist’s use of miniature collage inlayed in multiple oversize layers of plexiglass sheets takes on a certain 3D-quality that almost feels like one is looking into a reflecting pool. It should come as no surprise, then, that the artist’s works explore themes of existentialism, love, life, and death.
At the ballet, Yellin, or “The King of Red Hook” as he is affectionately referred to (and where his expansive Pioneer Works arts mecca is located), studied the dancer’s form and his or her movements to create the limited-edition series which stand in first, second, and fourth positions to Elie Nadelman’s Circus Women marble sculpture.
Of the collaboration, Yellin shares, “Being invited to create new work for NYCB is a wonderful honor. I’m grateful people are connecting with the pieces—it’s beautiful and I feel lucky.” He continues, “The pieces are being shown together in one room, which is nice. It won’t always be that way as each piece will go into various private collections, but for now, the oneness is a good thing.”
Interconnectedness, of course, isn’t a new idea for Yellin who produces the print magazine Intercourse. He exclaims, “I love the interdisciplinary— dance and art, music and art. Art has the power to transform memories into orgasmic experiences, a milked tornado turned into chemical paroxysms.”
When asked about his desires and what he hopes theatergoers experience at the exhibit, he exclaims, “Much like the forms, I want people to move freely through life, through space. I want people travel, to become fish, to feel so free and to be so moved that they jump into the sea, and suck the salt from sea beds.” And with that, Tendu, plié, close. Jeté. Arabesque. Fin.